Skip to main navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer For Medicare For Providers For Brokers For Employers Español For Individuals & Families: For Individuals & Families Medical Dental Other Supplemental Explore coverage through work How to Buy Health Insurance Types of Dental Insurance Open Enrollment vs. Special Enrollment See all topics Shop for Medicare plans Member Guide Find a Doctor Log in to myCigna
Home Knowledge Center Wellness Library Maintaining a Healthy Relationship With a Loved One Who Has a Mental Health Condition

Maintaining a Healthy Relationship With a Loved One Who Has a Mental Health Condition


If you are close to someone with a mental health condition, you're probably wondering how to best help them. Maintaining a good relationship with them is one way. But this may feel tough at times, especially when the illness makes it harder for your loved one to manage their emotions and behaviors. Here are some things that you can do to help keep your relationship healthy.

  • Learn about the condition.

    Understanding the condition can help you strengthen your relationship. It can help you let go of any blame or false beliefs you might have about the condition. One resource you could try is the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website. Go to to learn more.

  • Separate your loved one from the condition.

    Try not to focus too much on the illness. Instead, focus on the things you love and enjoy about the person.

  • Make it safe for your loved one to talk to you.
    • Practice listening. Ask to hear their point of view. Listen closely to what they say. It's often better not to offer your opinion or advice unless asked. When you do, be thoughtful about your loved one's feelings.
    • Manage how you react. For example, stay calm and try to avoid arguing. If you're feeling too emotional, take some time alone before talking.
    • Try to empathize with them. You may not always agree with them. But you might let them know that you care about how they feel.
  • Offer to help when you can.

    Ask your loved one how you can be most helpful. If you can, talk to your loved one's doctor or counselor about how you can help. Try not to assume you know what your loved one needs.

  • Have fun together.

    Do something you both enjoy. You could do things like watch a movie, play a game, or spend time outdoors.

  • Build a support system.

    Make sure you both have others you can talk to and lean on. This could be supportive family, close friends, a faith leader, or a mental health support group.

  • Care for yourself.

    Being in a relationship with someone who has a mental health condition can be very hard and tiring at times. Caring for your physical and emotional health can help.

    • Find a counselor for yourself. Counseling can give you tools to help manage stress. You also can learn how to build healthy boundaries with your loved one. You can ask your doctor for a referral.
    • Get enough sleep, eat a variety of healthy foods, and get regular exercise.
    • Practice healthy coping skills, like meditation or deep breathing.
    • Take time to yourself to recharge. You could take a hot bath, go for a walk, or spend time with friends.

If it's an emergency or if your loved one is in a crisis, get help right away. Call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). Or text HOME to 741741 to access the Crisis Text Line.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

© 1995-2022 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

<cipublic-spinner variant="large"><span>Loading…</span></cipublic-spinner>

Page Footer

I want to...

Get an ID card File a claim View my claims and EOBs Check coverage under my plan See prescription drug list Find an in-network doctor, dentist, or facility Find a form Find 1095-B tax form information View the Cigna Glossary Contact Cigna


Individuals and Families Medicare Employers Brokers Providers

Secure Member Sites

myCigna member portal Health Care Provider portal Cigna for Employers Client Resource Portal Cigna for Brokers

Cigna Company Information

About Cigna Company Profile Careers Newsroom Investors Suppliers Third Party Administrators International Evernorth

 Cigna. All rights reserved.

Privacy Legal Product Disclosures Cigna Company Names Customer Rights Accessibility Non-Discrimination Notice [PDF] Language Assistance [PDF] Report Fraud Sitemap


Individual and family medical and dental insurance plans are insured by Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (CHLIC), Cigna HealthCare of Arizona, Inc., Cigna HealthCare of Illinois, Inc., and Cigna HealthCare of North Carolina, Inc. Group health insurance and health benefit plans are insured or administered by CHLIC, Connecticut General Life Insurance Company (CGLIC), or their affiliates (see a listing of the legal entities  that insure or administer group HMO, dental HMO, and other products or services in your state). Accidental Injury, Critical Illness, and Hospital Care plans or insurance policies are distributed exclusively by or through operating subsidiaries of Cigna Corporation, are administered by Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company, and are insured by either (i) Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company (Bloomfield, CT); (ii) Life Insurance Company of North America (“LINA”) (Philadelphia, PA); or (iii) New York Life Group Insurance Company of NY (“NYLGICNY”) (New York, NY), formerly known as Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York. The Cigna name, logo, and other Cigna marks are owned by Cigna Intellectual Property, Inc. LINA and NYLGICNY are not affiliates of Cigna.

All insurance policies and group benefit plans contain exclusions and limitations. For availability, costs and complete details of coverage, contact a licensed agent or Cigna sales representative. This website is not intended for residents of New Mexico.

Selecting these links will take you away from to another website, which may be a non-Cigna website. Cigna may not control the content or links of non-Cigna websites. Details