Articles

10 top tips for supporting someone with mental health problems: #2

26 May 2015 1 minute read

Don't talk about their problems with other people unless they have agreed to you doing so.

When supporting someone with mental health problems the importance of confidentiality cannot be overemphasised. A great deal of stigma continues to surround those with mental health problems, and it is vital that we keep anything we are told in confidence to ourselves. Just because someone has asked for your support or prayer, this doesn't mean that they want everyone in the church or wider community to know about the issue and be praying (or talking!) too. Always get consent before you share prayer requests or personal information.

It is only acceptable to break confidentiality in an emergency or if we are genuinely concerned about the person and we need to seek advice. Within a church context, it would be best in the first instance to seek advice from the church leader, or the person designated to help with pastoral issues if there is one. When seeking advice, it is not always necessary to give the name of the person you have concerns about. Do try to preserve their privacy as much as possible.

Perhaps check out the resources section of our Brief Guide booklet or look at Mind and Soul's Access Pack for further information.