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How do I tell my parents I'm depressed?

305 Answers
Last Updated: 03/19/2022 at 10:21pm
How do I tell my parents I'm depressed?
1 Tip to Feel Better
United Kingdom
Moderated by

Lisa Meighan, MSc Psychology


Hello, I am Lisa and I work in a person-centred approach mixed with cognitive behavioural therapy. I believe we all have the potential to be the best we can be.

Top Rated Answers
August 9th, 2017 4:13pm
Ask to sit down with them and tell them that there is something you need to tell them about and that you will need all their support and help. I am sure they will be very understanding and will give you the support you need.
August 10th, 2017 9:15pm
You should sit them down and tell them honestly how you've been feeling, explain so they can better understand. Tell them especially if you have been thinking suicidal thoughts so they can help you by taking you to see a therapist or maybe even family counselor so you all can go through this together. I told my parent when we were at our family counselor! My mother experiences depression and anxiety just like me, we went to the appointments and learned more about each other.
August 13th, 2017 10:39pm
I think the only way to do this is to sit them down. As difficult as this might be to do. Sit them down. Tell them exactly how you feel and what it is that you're going through. It's not entirely up to you to school them on depression but you have to be able to explain to them in simple terms what depression is. You could also refer them to websites that offer detailed, intellectual information on depression. Get pamphlets, book, from school or a local library and give them to her to read.
August 17th, 2017 2:58am
Sit them down and just say how your feeling. Your family members are there to give love and support. And being depressed is not a strange thing, many people are.
August 19th, 2017 10:55am
Talk to them about your current situation and discuss the reason behind your depression with them. Tell them to help you get through this.
October 22nd, 2017 2:38am
Be honest with them and tell them in anyway you feel is best. Whether you write them about it in a letter or note, tell them in person, over text or even on the phone. It depends on your situation. Just be honest and straightforward, at least you can say you tried telling them when you decide to do it.
October 25th, 2017 6:09pm
Explain thoroughly and honestly, how you feel and what it means to you. Don't be afraid to share your true thoughts and feelings. Allow them to ask questions, to ensure they have an understanding of what you're experiencing. If their response is opposite your expectations, be honest about that as well. Parents react the way they know how and sometimes that is incorrect or not the most helpful response. Keep in mind, this is tough for them too, as they do not want you to feel the way you do. Together you can try to work on solutions.
November 8th, 2017 8:21pm
There are many ways you can go about to doing this, and there's really no right way to do it in my opinion. You can just come out outright and tell them, or just drop subtle hints, or even ask someone to tell them for you. In my case, I wrote a letter. A really, really long letter; mostly detailing events and thoughts to show that I wasn't just making it up since I wasn't show my parents would have believed me at the time. I won't lie, it was a scary experience for me, writing up the letter and leaving it a place for them to find it, but I felt a slight relief after doing it because it was something I had to do.
November 10th, 2017 10:08am
Depression is heavily stigmatised where I'm from. I didn't have the courage to tell it to them, face to face. For me, I wrote an extensive Email to them because writing words down helps me put my thoughts in perspective!
November 11th, 2017 9:55pm
Sit them down when they have time, tell them why you feel depressed if possible, be open and honest, they will want to support you. Try to see from their viewpoint on how you would feel if you were in their shoes. Try and explain as best you can how you feel and explain that you need their support and try to think of ways that you think they could best support you and discuss them.
November 15th, 2017 12:43pm
There is no sugarcoating it, to get the support you need you will have to say it as it is. Remember that you are asking for support just as you would if you were physically injured.
November 15th, 2017 8:29pm
In my experience, telling close family members/friends about mental health is best done by being as short and precise as possible. Telling them a little bit about what's been going on, and then - perhaps most importantly - what I need from them. So it could be something like: "Hey mom, I've been feeling quite down recently and I am pretty sure I am depressed. This means that I would really like to start seeing a therapist. I have found one that's covered by our insurance and I was wondering, can you drive me there once a week?" Maybe you already have been diagnosed and have a therapist, in which case it could be modified - I even think bringing it up with your therapist could be really beneficial.
November 15th, 2017 11:12pm
Not only have I been depressed myself but I’m sure if your visiting this website you are looking for the easiest way to tell your parents you are going through depression. Although there really is no easy way out on this you could start off by telling your parents why your feeling this way. As your parents begin to understand what you are explaining to them I’m sure that they will at least try to understand although it feels like that’s impossible. Our parents are the only two people that I’m sure you can trust with everything so telling them is the best way to help you. Just know that you will get better and that they’re going to help you. :)
November 16th, 2017 1:44pm
In my case, i tried to tell my parents several times, and it got pushed off as unimportant. Because i was a child, and their opinion meant so much to me, i believed that it was unimportant, and afterca few times, i stopped asking them, knowing I'd be put down. I did everything to cover it up in fact. I cut, i cried at night, i hid whenever i broke down...
November 16th, 2017 7:49pm
Talk to them calmly, talk about how you have felt the last weeks and that you need their help to get out of this, because parents are a great help at such moments
November 25th, 2017 4:33am
Tell them at the right time. It is important that you are serious. Dont make it a joke. Ask directly for help. And tell them how you feel
December 6th, 2017 4:45pm
Start off with a casual conversation and you can work your way in. Ask your parents how did their day go today. When they open up to you, open up to them as well. Explain how your day went and that you feel happy all the time. Parents are always their to listen to us. Even when we are a little hesitant on talking to them.
December 9th, 2017 9:24pm
approach them gently with a kind attitude and tell them that you are depressed and you want to find help from someone
December 10th, 2017 12:12am
Tell them between the lines slowly, and then reveal more and more to them until they het what you’re feeling.
December 21st, 2017 4:44pm
If you are closer to one of your family members tell them that you want to talk with them Be honest and say everything that is going on your mind..reach out for them..let them listen to you
December 22nd, 2017 4:30pm
It's good to be up front and honest. If your struggling with depression it's healthy to address it and find the source.
December 23rd, 2017 2:00am
Slowly tell them and it may not seem like it, but they will understand and if they dont help them understand. It will be okay!
December 24th, 2017 1:41pm
You can try saying something like this: “This is difficult for me to say. I have been concerned about your reaction but I have something very serious to tell you. I believe that I may have depression. I have suicidal thoughts at times. These thoughts are frightening and I don’t know how to handle them. I believe that I need help. I am serious about wanting help. Can you please help me?”
December 28th, 2017 9:52am
You can tell them in different ways, you can tell them face to face, you can write it and then let them know. I know it requires courage to speak your heart out but they are your parents I'm sure they will understand you if you talk to them about your situation.
January 4th, 2018 2:06am
Sit down with your parents and have a honest but loving conversation with them about how you're feeling. Explain to them how this affects your life. If you want their help, you can tell them this as well. A lot of parents are happy to do what they can when they realize you need their help.
January 13th, 2018 4:51am
Be honest, first word/sentence is the hardest, start with saying mom/dad i want to talk, than stand tall and tell them how you feel.
January 17th, 2018 8:28am
It’s even courageous of you to want to reach out to your parents about your mental health. When I first told my mother, I sat her down, took a deep breath and just poured out everything I was feeling. I felt so much better afterwards and she was so supportive and vital to helping me get back on track. You don’t have to suffer alone.
January 18th, 2018 1:58pm
Make sure to set a time to talk when they won't be busy, and can focus on the topic. Calmly inform them that you've been struggling with depression, and ask for any assistance you need. Inform them of your safety level, your plan to stay safe and anything they can do to help. Expect questions, they are your parents and will want to know.
January 21st, 2018 12:15pm
Based on my personal experience it wasn't something that came easily. I ended up telling my schools counselor before telling my parents. I wrote what I was going to say on a piece of paper and gave it to my mum. I then quickly ran upstairs and hid. It gave my mum time to process what I had written without me actually having to speak to her.
January 24th, 2018 4:46pm
Have a family meeting and just be very honest with them and lay everything on the table. Get the help that you need. Get a good therapist, I would suggest a young person because they seem to know more. Open source counselling is $30-50 per session