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Are you a relative or friend who is worried about a young person and their mental health? Do you want to know more about mental health or about psychosis?

As a relative or friend, it can be hard sometimes to know what to do for the best. Young people often don’t recognise problems in themselves and it can be hard to know what you can do that will be helpful. At the same time, we know that family and friends support, your support, is vital to help your friend or family member to recover.

‘I think friends might have helped me to engage with services because they reminded me that I had a place to get back to if you see what I mean, like I've got a goal you know.’ (Young Person)

Talking to people about what’s happening can be difficult, especially if you’re worried that they will respond badly, over-react or even judge you in some way. On top of all this, it can be difficult to do anything when you’re worried and already working really hard to try to manage everything that’s going on.

‘We were quite scared that she would be taken away, that she would be sectioned …or there was some sort of establishment out there that was looking to try to fix people’ (Mother)

If any of this sounds familiar then this page is especially for you. There is advice for family, advice for friends, a booklet that you can download, stories and tips from other friends and family members who've gone through similar things, and a blog where you can share your story, get some advice or hear what worked for others. We've developed this page with and for relatives and friends of young people with mental health problems.

‘I think if you include the family as much as you can, I think they’re more likely to engage with the service if it’s more of a whole family-type approach, because you know, I can then see that, yes L’s doing a lot of good work for her and then I’ll encourage it more, if you see what I mean.’ (Parent)

You may also find other pages helpful like the information, drugs and getting help pages.

The EYE Project is a research project supported by:

Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Swandean, Arundel Road, Worthing, West Sussex, BN13 3EP