Being diagnosed with a mental illness can be lonely. Despite growing awareness of mental health issues, many people still feel uncomfortable sharing the details of their diagnosis – or their daily struggles – with others. In many places, stigma or discrimination are still big issues for people with mental health concerns.
But these days it’s easier than ever to find a supportive community to help you weather the storm. The internet has it’s downsides when it comes to mental health.
But online communities can be a lifeline for anyone struggling with mental illness. Since the early days of the internet, people have been sharing their personal stories anonymously online and finding relief, comfort, and hope. Now, there are lots of well-established communities where you can connect with others’ who understand what you’re going through.
How Facebook Groups can Foster Mental Health
While there are lots of great mental health communities tucked into corners of the internet, one of the simplest places to find support now is on Facebook. Facebook Groups are one of the fastest-growing trends on the infamous social media site and with good reason. They bring together people with similar interests from all over the world, creating tightly-knit communities with a common goal.
The main features of all Facebook groups are the same. Users can post questions, stories, pictures, and videos. Most importantly, they can respond to others, providing advice, comfort, and empathy.
In mental health Facebook groups, the focus is often on lifting each other up and reminding other users that they aren’t alone. Most mental health Facebook groups have specific rules to make sure the discussion stays appropriate, safe, and supportive. For example, many groups require trigger warnings for content that might trigger another person’s anxiety or PTSD.
There are countless mental health support groups on Facebook now – including groups for specific mental illnesses like borderline personality disorder or schizophrenia. In this article, we’ve picked out 10 of the most popular mental health support groups for depression and anxiety – the two most common mental illnesses in the US. Explore these groups to find a supportive community that will understand what you’re going through.
A Word of Warning
Facebook groups can be a great source of community and support. But the advice you find on these groups doesn’t come from mental health professionals.
If you’re struggling with a mental illness, we’d strongly recommend you seek help from a professional therapist in addition to online support groups. You can even find professional support online: ChatOwl’s text therapy app lets you stay anonymous while offering appropriate, safe advice from an expert therapist at an affordable price.
And online communities like Facebook aren’t the right place to seek support in a crisis. If you’re in crisis, call 911 or a support line like the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (+1 (800) 273-8255).
Top 10 Facebook Groups for Mental Health Support
One of the largest and most active support groups on Facebook for people with anxiety and depression. With nearly 200,000 members and hundreds of posts each day, this private community is really active, and you’re likely to always find someone to talk too.
A small but friendly and supportive community run by Kelly Jean, a blogger, and photographer from the UK. As well as support from group members, Kelly provides links to free resources from her website, Anxious Lass, where she writes openly about her lifelong experience with social anxiety.
A positive place to chat and ask questions about social anxiety to the thousands of users in this group. This is a very active group focused on peer-support – not medical advice – in a kind and welcoming environment.
A strong community focused on healing and overcoming anxiety. This group is centered around The Anxiety Guy podcast, one of the most popular self-help podcasts around, run by Dennis Simek. Users support each other to make progress and celebrate their small wins in tackling anxiety.
Another prevalent, global support group, this is a great place to seek advice or share your story. The admins and moderators have set up lots of rules to ensure everyone feels safe and welcome in the group, and the focus stays on supporting each other through hard times.
A long-standing community that’s been around since 2014, this is a safe place to seek help and raise awareness around mental health. Everything is private, and there are strict rules to keep everyone safe – with a focus on respecting each other and providing constructive criticism only.
A fast-growing community with dozens of posts every day related to mental health. In addition to community posts, the creator shares useful information and more light-hearted activities related to mental health.
A useful group to join if you specifically experience anxiety related to your health. This is a private group with nearly 30,000 members, all of whom can empathize with your experiences and respond to your concerns – so there’s no judgment here.
Being a parent with depression or anxiety can be especially tricky. This group is a great safe place to head to where you know everyone will understand what you’re going through. It’s an active peer-to-peer network of mum’s who can remind you – you’re not alone.
Another great community for parents – this time if it’s your child who is struggling with mental illness. There are so many unknowns when trying to support a teenager with a mental illness, but this group will offer peer support and encouragement as you do your best to help your child