Friends and family can be great sources of support and they often play an important role in helping someone recover from a mental health issue. Oftentimes, the support required to treat a mental health condition exceeds the capacity of friends and family members alone, and instead, necessitates professional intervention.
Well-intentioned friends and family members can often be quick to give advice and enter into ‘fix-it mode’, which may or may not be helpful or complementary to one’s needs. People close to us can often lack objectivity, knowledge, and understanding, which can lead to invalidating responses and biased perspectives. In other cases, the presenting problem for which you need help may actually involve a friend or family member, making them an inappropriate source of support.
Psychologists are objective, non-judgemental and specially trained in mental health, which allows them to overcome the above downfalls whilst working with the person to address their difficulties.