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Talking to your parents about emotional problems

A girl and her mother sitting at a table with hot drinksIt takes courage to tell a parent or guardian that you are having trouble with your feelings. But adults can help you through tough times, and it's important to get the support you need.

When you're ready, try to find a time when you won't get interrupted. You may even need to schedule a time to talk. Try saying something like, "Mom and Dad, I have something I'd like to talk about. Can we sit and talk after dinner?"

If talking seems too hard, it might be easier to write your thoughts. A letter, an email, or even a text message can get the conversation going. Try something as simple as "I've been feeling anxious" or "I'm worried I might be depressed." Or you might just say, "I need your help."

Keep in mind that if your parents or you get upset, you can continue the conversation over time. If they ask a question about your feelings that you can't answer, you might say you'll think about it and will talk more later.

If you think you definitely can't talk to your parents or guardians, reach out to another trusted adult. This might be a school counselor, teacher, religious leader, school nurse, or doctor. Definitely don't give up. You deserve to feel better!


Content last reviewed January 07, 2015
Page last updated January 30, 2015