Help in tough times

Negative or fearful thoughts

If you are going through a tough time, know that there are people who are there to help you at that very moment. You should not be alone with your worries. You can write or call someone you trust. For example, a close friend, relative, or acquaintance.

Besides this, you can try relaxing, calming down or distracting yourself. For example, going for a walk outside, exercising, playing a game, cycling in your favourite park, painting or cooking, taking an aromatic bath, listening to quiet music, reading a book, sleeping.

Sometimes even the simplest conversation can soothe feelings and give you renewed strength. Try to contact your close person and tell them that you would like to talk to them for a while. Try to explain why it is especially important to you at the moment.

If this is not possible right now, you can talk to a teacher who understands you, a school counsellor or a volunteer from a helpline. The telephone numbers of these services are strictly confidential. A specialist will be able to listen to you and support you in your time of need.

If for some reason you can't talk to someone right now, try writing down everything you are feeling. This can help you to feel better and deal with what you are feeling right now.

Worrying about a close person

If your close friend or acquaintance is in danger, please do not waste time and notify the emergency services by providing all necessary information to the dispatcher.

If your friend, girlfriend, relative, or someone you know is going through a tough time, you can offer to talk about what is bothering them. Let them know that you care about what is happening. Show them that they are not alone and that you are there to listen and support them. Try to spend more time with your girlfriend or friend, and ask your other friends to do the same. Check in from time to time to see if everything is OK, ask if there is anything you can do to help.

Pay attention to changes in the person's behaviour. Individual phrases may indicate suicidal thoughts. For example: “I am so tired”, “I want to disappear”, “I want it all to end”, “It will all be over soon”. Such words can be a sign of loneliness and hopelessness. Sometimes a person is apathetic or, on the contrary, suddenly becomes nervous and irascible. You may be disturbed, for example, by the person's posts on social networks or some of their individual messages addressed to you. They may be worried and have extremely negative thoughts.

Be a good listener, don't judge the other person, and be sympathetic to their feelings. In no case devalue the feelings of the suffering person, show care, show that you understand that it is tough for them now. Try not to make unreasonable promises or any harsh statements. Do not say that “Everything will be fine”. These words can irritate the person and increase the distance between you and the interlocutor and make things worse.

If you realise you can't handle it, ask more experienced people for advice. Perhaps someone you know needs professional help. Advise them to see a qualified specialist, such as a doctor, psychologist, or helpline.

Help hotlines in the Russian Federation

8 800 2000 122 — a unified all-Russian helpline for children, teenagers, and their parents.
(24 hours a day, anonymous, free of charge throughout the Russian Federation)

+7 495 989-50-50 — psychological help line of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations and the Psychology Faculty of Moscow State University.
(24 hours a day, anonymous, calls within Moscow are free, from other cities – payment according to tariffs)

051 or 8 495 051 — 24-hour emergency psychological help phones in Moscow.
(free of charge from a landline in Moscow/according to the tariff plan)

Help hotlines in the Republic of Belarus

8 801 100-16-11 — nationwide children's helpline in the Republic of Belarus.
(24 hours a day, anonymous, free of charge in the whole territory of the Republic of Belarus)

Help hotlines in the Republic of Kazakhstan

111 — a unified help line for children, teenagers, and parents in the Republic of Kazakhstan.
(24 hours a day, anonymous, free of charge throughout the Republic of Kazakhstan)

Help hotlines in European countries

116 111 — pan-European mobile number of the children's hotline.
(free of charge for residents of Ukraine and EU countries)

Emergency numbers

112 — unified mobile number of operational services.

101 — the telephone number of the fire service and the Ministry of Emergency Situations.

102 — telephone number of the Ministry of the Internal Affairs (police).

103 — medical emergency phone number.

104 — gas service phone number.

Recommendations have been prepared in cooperation with psychologists.
Source and inspiration: VK article.