Help me through depression

Depression is a mental illness that a lot of people will experience in their life time.

Some ideas

  • Understand that the young person you care about might feel embarrassed about their feelings
  • Ask them if they want to talk and let them decide how, when and where
  • Ask open questions and listen to them carefully
  • Accept their thoughts, feelings and experiences (don't judge them) and try to see things from their point of view
  • Try to find an activity they'd like you to do with them
  • If you think they're at risk of hurting themselves or others, get them help as soon as possible

Helping a young person through depression

If you know rangatahi / young people who have depression, there are many ways you can help. This page outlines what depression is, why some people experience it, how you can help, professional and online supports, and what to do if someone wants to harm themselves.

Please remember, people with depression can and do get better. Depression may feel really overwhelming sometimes, but there is a way through, and help is available. 

In a crisis or emergency

If you're worried about someone’s immediate safety or they have attempted suicide, please do the following:

  • Call your local mental health crisis assessment team(external link) or head to the emergency department of your nearest hospital.
  • If they’re a physical danger to themselves, you or anyone else, call 111 immediately.
  • Make sure someone is with them until help arrives.
  • Remove any obvious items they might use to hurt themselves or attempt suicide (including guns, medication, car keys, knives and rope).
  • Let them know how much you care.
  • Try and remain calm.
  • Keep talking with them, listening to them and asking questions without judging.
  • Make sure you’re safe.

For info about training in suicide prevention, go here(external link).

Find organisations that help rangatahi / young people manage their depression.

Find organisations