Having at least one trusted adult in your life consistently can have a huge impact on your mental health!
Do you prefer to talk to your friends when you’re having a hard time? Do you find that many of your peers come to you when they need help or just someone to talk to? Friends can be a great source of support and comfort, but helping a friend going through a rough time all by yourself is a lot to take on. However, would you or your friends know what to do if you’re worried about someone’s immediate safety? Would you know what to do if you’re worried that a friend may hurt themselves or others?
If you said “no” to either of those questions, that’s okay! That’s where a “trusted adult” should step in. Research indicates that when youth have meaningful connections with a trusted adult, they report much less mental health related problems and experience more positive youth development. A trusted adult is any stable, supportive and committed adult in your life. No matter what, you know you can reach out to those adults if you’re in a crisis situation or are having a hard time and just need someone to talk to.
That might be your parents, but what if you have a hard time talking to your parents about sensitive topics? Well, you’re not alone – many youth feel more comfortable discussing sensitive topics with other adults than their parents, like a teacher, school counselor, coach or a youth pastor. What’s important is that you can identify at least one adult you can go to if you need help for yourself or a friend.
It’s normal to go to your friends if you need support or just someone to talk to. However, if you’re worried about someone’s safety, it’s crucial that you tag a trusted adult to get that person help, like connecting them to the appropriate mental health support.
Want to learn more about how to help a friend in need? Check out this article from Grow Strong KC: Do You Know How to Help a Friend in Crisis?