Ask Liz! Mental Health and Treatment

“What do I do to support a friend who’s severely mentally ill, but won’t pursue any treatment?” -Anonymous

Dear Anonymous,

This is a really tough situation to be in unfortunately. One I’ve struggled with when working in the social work field. Unfortunately there isn’t really much you can do in getting them to do any sort of treatment. If they don’t want to pursue treatment they have every right not to. But if their mental illness involves them hurting themselves or others you can reach out to hotlines or adult protective services.

As to how you can support them, a lot of what you’ll need to do is to check your emotions to see where you’re at. If you can’t be there for your friend, that’s totally okay. If you can that’s also okay. Be there for your friend and accept every decision they decide.

Good luck and I hope this helps!

As Always,


If you or anyone you know is struggling please reach out to the statewide crisis hotline at 1-888-568-1112

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