Ask twice, people urged, as new research shows nearly three quarters of people in London would say they are ‘fine’ even if struggling with a mental health problem
New research released by the mental health anti-stigma campaign, Time to Change, reveals that when asked, 70% of people in London would tell friends and family we are ‘fine’, even if struggling with a mental health problem.
When asked why, responses suggest we doubt whether people really want to hear the honest answer.
The top concerns in London were:
- Just because people ask how you are, doesn’t mean they really want to know (50%)
- I don’t want to burden people (50%)
- I’d only talk if I was confident my friend or family member really wanted to listen (35%)
The national survey of over 2,000 people highlights that asking ‘How are you?’ can often prompt no more than a meaningless exchange. To tackle this, Time to Change is urging people to ‘Ask Twice’ if they suspect a friend, family member, or colleague might be struggling with their mental health. The campaign says the simple act of asking again, with interest, shows a genuine willingness to talk and listen.
‘Ask Twice’ is launched as part of Time to Change’s five-year In Your Corner campaign, which encourages us to be more open and supportive of the 1 in 4 people living with a mental health problem in any given year.
While there has been a positive shift in the way mental health problems are viewed in England, insight shows that in practical terms many people are still unsure of how to be more supportive.