Trying to Help People Who Don’t Want Help

Trying to Help People Who Don’t Want Help

As a mental health first aid instructor, one of the most common questions I get asked is, “how do I help someone who doesn’t want help?”

Depending on the approach being used, many people find that when they try and help someone struggling with a mental illness, that the sufferer runs away or attacks them. Now this begs the question, why did they get that reaction?

The first rule of thumb is never, ever give advice to someone suffering from a mental illness. People don’t like being given advice. Sometimes when you try and help someone by giving advice, you can trigger people and then they can become cruel to you because you have told them how to change their life. Think about how you react when people tell you how to live your life.

So what is the right approach?

  • Unconditional love without expectations
  • Being the best person you can be
  • Acknowledge you can’t make people change
  • Inspire others by prioritizing your own self care and mental health through action
  • Being a good listener
  • Letting go of expectations that you need to get someone to do something
  • Being aware of your own mood/attitude when engaging in conversation
  • Understanding that recovery is a journey and a process
  • Share your ideas when asked
  • Accept it is their path
  • Be genuine
  • Be aware

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