Saturday, 30 July 2022

Mental Health & Friends

Saturday 30th July marks the International Day of Friendship. The Editorial Team have taken the opportunity to share their thoughts on what friendship means to them and how their friends have supported their mental health.


- Student Minds Blog Editorial Team


With everything that's happening in the world, the International Day of Friendship is a celebration of all the goodness and solidarity in friendships.

Thoughts on friendship from the Editorial Team:

Natalie (Student)
  • Friendship is very important to me and my friends have shown me lots of support with my mental health struggles. They have helped to find the best options of support for me and always listen to what I have to say. I always hope to show this same support when my friends turn to me for help with their mental health.

 Luke (Student) 
  • Friendship and friends have a massive impact on your life. My friends were amazing to me during my experiences of grief and mental health struggles. Friendship isn’t always about having someone to always talk to about your feelings but someone who will take you out and distract and sense your mood.
  • It is important when identifying good friendships that the feelings and effort being put in are reciprocated otherwise this leads to toxic friendships. Your true friends will show themselves in times of adversity and will support you through hardships. So maintain consistent respect and communication and trust your gut.

 Martina (Graduate) 
  • Friends have helped me through my lowest times, supported my decisions, and always celebrated my achievements. My closest friend, I have known since secondary school and she has become the family I got to choose.
  • I believe it is important to be respectful of each other's space, which is why we don't need to be in touch constantly. We know we will be there for each other and can reach out for good and bad news. I value friendships where we can tell each other the truth, and not simply what we want to hear. She has been open to listening when my mental health was at its lowest, sharing her points of view and advice which helped me gain perspective and feel less isolated.

 Caoimhe (Graduate) 
  • I believe any friendship you have should be good for your mental health. I am so grateful that if I need to speak about anything I can come to my friends with no fear of judgement, and I feel so safe being vulnerable with them. Trust is the core of friendship and this is how you can be vulnerable with your friends because you trust them. 
  • A friendship is something which is built through consistent effort, love and respect. You always choose to be a better friend and always support these people.

 Sarah (Student) 
  • My best friend has been wonderful for my mental health. We confide in and listen to each other, and encourage each other to see the positives in life.
  • That being said, I haven't always been lucky enough to have a friend like this. I've had friends who made me feel drained after talking to them, and who left me feeling worse about myself rather than better.
  • In times like these, I tried to treat myself as my own best friend, reminding myself that if I wouldn't say things to a friend, I shouldn't say them to myself. Be as kind to yourself as you are to others - you deserve it.

 Preksha (Student) 
  • From a very young age, I have strongly believed in the saying “a friend in need is a friend indeed”. I feel incredibly blessed to have friends who have stuck by me through rainbows and storms. They have given me the best advice, always with my best interest in mind… and on other days, they are just great listeners! When I talk myself down, they are the first to stop and remind me of the positivity around me. 
  • When I went to University, I struggled a lot with my mental health in the first term. I had barely met some people for a week when they decided to walk alongside me on my journey to recovery. This is when our friendship flourished the most because they had no ‘reason’ to support a stranger - they were there for me only because of their own goodwill. That is when I realised that friendships don’t have a ‘reason’ or underlying motifs. 
  • I aspire and try my best to be as supportive and understanding a friend as I have been blessed with. 

Shamira (Graduate)
  • My friendships were a great help to my mental health, especially when we couldn’t meet in person. This made me appreciate them more but also appreciate that we’re all going through our own personal issues and life stories, so when you naturally drift away from someone it’s not a slight against you but just the consequence of people growing up

Rosanna (Graduate)
  • We sometimes underestimate how important friendships are as we enter into adulthood, especially as romantic relationships and other commitments demand a lot of our attention. It can also be tricky to make new friends and maintain them. Friendships go through cycles; we support our friends and they are there for us at different times. It's also okay when we outgrow friendships or need to remove ourselves when they become toxic. But each friendship is unique and worth celebrating, no matter how new or old it is.

✨ Taylor (Student) ✨
  • University meant outgrowing a lot of friendships which seems scary at first but along the way you meet some many more incredible people. Through the good and the bad times, friends that make you laugh and be grateful for what you have are the ones that you need to keep close.

Share how you're getting involved with the International Day of Friendship on our Facebook group.

Find out more ways to get involved with Student Minds and volunteer today.




Written by the Student Minds Editorial Team. Find out more about them here.

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