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  • SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.

    Also visit the online treatment locator.

SAMHSA’s National Helpline, 1-800-662-HELP (4357) (also known as the Treatment Referral Routing Service), or TTY: 1-800-487-4889 is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations.

Also visit the online treatment locator, or send your zip code via text message: 435748 (HELP4U) to find help near you. Read more about the HELP4U text messaging service.

The service is open 24/7, 365 days a year.

English and Spanish are available if you select the option to speak with a national representative. Currently, the 435748 (HELP4U) text messaging service is only available in English.

In 2020, the Helpline received 833,598 calls. This is a 27 percent increase from 2019, when the Helpline received a total of 656,953 calls for the year.

The referral service is free of charge. If you have no insurance or are underinsured, we will refer you to your state office, which is responsible for state-funded treatment programs. In addition, we can often refer you to facilities that charge on a sliding fee scale or accept Medicare or Medicaid. If you have health insurance, you are encouraged to contact your insurer for a list of participating health care providers and facilities.

The service is confidential. We will not ask you for any personal information. We may ask for your zip code or other pertinent geographic information in order to track calls being routed to other offices or to accurately identify the local resources appropriate to your needs.

No, we do not provide counseling. Trained information specialists answer calls, transfer callers to state services or other appropriate intake centers in their states, and connect them with local assistance and support.

  • Suggested Resources

    What Is Substance Abuse Treatment? A Booklet for Families
    Created for family members of people with alcohol abuse or drug abuse problems. Answers questions about substance abuse, its symptoms, different types of treatment, and recovery. Addresses concerns of children of parents with substance use/abuse problems.

    It's Not Your Fault (NACoA) (PDF | 12 KB)
    Assures teens with parents who abuse alcohol or drugs that, "It's not your fault!" and that they are not alone. Encourages teens to seek emotional support from other adults, school counselors, and youth support groups such as Alateen, and provides a resource list.

    After an Attempt: A Guide for Taking Care of Your Family Member After Treatment in the Emergency Department
    Aids family members in coping with the aftermath of a relative's suicide attempt. Describes the emergency department treatment process, lists questions to ask about follow-up treatment, and describes how to reduce risk and ensure safety at home.

    Family Therapy Can Help: For People in Recovery From Mental Illness or Addiction
    Explores the role of family therapy in recovery from mental illness or substance abuse. Explains how family therapy sessions are run and who conducts them, describes a typical session, and provides information on its effectiveness in recovery.

    For additional resources, please visit the SAMHSA Store.

Last Updated: 08/30/2022

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I feel stupid and constantly depressed

Requests for helpWrite your story

I don't want to live. I am 25, my salary is so small, and I still work only 2 weeks a month, I work as a salesman. I work 2 weeks a month because I don't want to spend my whole life only on work.
I didn't dream about it. I love creativity, I love to draw and make music. For me, working as a salesperson is a shame and disgrace. But there is no money for VO. I'm embarrassed to talk about this kind of work to anyone. But I need money for a hobby. Everyone says: turn a hobby into a job. But no one talks about pitfalls: when there is no one to support you financially, you need to eat and dress, pay for utilities, when even a hobby requires investments and considerable ones, when you cannot devote all your time only to development, then how can you turn a hobby into work ? I can't think of anything, I don't know how to do it. It makes me feel stupid and depressed all the time. Indeed, in books about success, everyone writes that it is so easy and simple. That by the age of 30 all are already successful businessmen, musicians and actors. I don't understand why I can't do anything with it. I feel like everything is passing me by, including my youth. And I have not achieved anything, I still have not become what I wanted to see myself. It seems to me that I am not moving anywhere and I am not developing, and at the same time I am earning a penny. I don’t even want to talk about personal relationships so as not to be upset once again. I don't see the point in anything. nine0005

Eva, age: 05/20/2018


Hello, Eva, imagine that my friend with a higher education works as a seller of used equipment, and he is literally happy) .. If you sell it to you personally does not fit, then you can find the person you want to be like (contemporary artist, musician). Read how they came to success, money - they are usually willing to share "secrets" in interviews and books. Because money is usually a means for something. If they become a target, then why are there so many successful businessmen, actors who become lifelong patients of neurologists. The most important thing is to develop gradually, first determine what you would like to do (specifically), and with God's help, start moving step by step towards the goal of getting your favorite profession, a hobby that can bring money. nine0003

svetlana , age: svetlana / 05/21/2018

Eva, honey, my advice to you is don't read any more books about success. And forget what they say. They've already driven you to depression.

You think that being a salesperson is a shame and disgrace. Wrong approach. Salespeople aren't people? You need to learn to love people. And life will sparkle with new colors, you'll see!)

You say that you love creativity, so you have a taste. And having a taste, competently combining colors in the wardrobe - you can dress beautifully and for little money so that you will look decent. nine0003

You have almost half a month free - you can learn how to sew, knit, make some jewelry from beads, in short, create designer things, what kind of video tutorials do you want? Full Internet - why isn't all this creativity?

The highest career for a Woman is to become a wonderful Wife. But not VO at all.

The Lord has seated you in a place where your future husband may very well meet) By the way, it is not necessary that you are a real prince and right on a white horse, do not miss it) But if you sit at work gloomy and angry at the whole world - he can and pass by)

Adult woman, age: over 40/05/21/2018

Eva, hello! 25 years is so little to sum up who you are and what you are. Don't be ashamed. Nothing to be ashamed of here. You can even praise - you work, and no matter who. Do you really think that all people started from leadership and successful positions? Of course not! As already written here, stop reading literature in which something that is not written is written, listen to the opinions of people, because you can’t please everyone. Look for yourself, no matter what. Be kind, friendly, love those around you and success will come to you, no matter where and by whom you work at the moment. There is absolutely no need to despair. Otherwise, you can get unpleasant things in life for comparison, for everyone in different ways, to whom illnesses to whom failures. Everyone has his own path. Everyone, like you, experienced fear, despair, experienced lack of money. Happiness is not in this. Not without this, of course, but not in this either, this is just an accompanying one. There will be a family, children, this will be your world, the big beautiful world of a woman. And on the way to it, do not be afraid to overcome what is happening at the moment, this will make you happy in the future! How? Just. Until you compare, you will never understand. There are no universal tips, because I don’t know you, all the subtleties that surround you. But in general, believe me, and then make sure that it is interesting to live, change, not immediately gradually, and everything will be fine. Time and patience for you. With respect, Nicholai. nine0003

Nikolai, age: 05/21/2018 39

Eva, hello. It is a mistake to believe that the profession of a salesperson should cause shame or disgrace.
In Soviet times, they said "All professions are needed, all professions are important," and put their own meaning into this phrase. Why don't you start a relationship? Are you ashamed or what's the problem? My sister graduated and has a higher education, but she could not find a job and she I had to go abroad to work. But she didn’t find anything else to do. While she left, she worked in a restaurant for the summer season, washing dishes. Sorry, but I felt that you are a proud person and therefore ashamed to work as a salesman. life is ahead. And this work is temporary. Look for something else, you can go to some manicure, stylist, makeup courses. These are also like creative professions. All the best to you. nine0003

Mulan, age: 05/26/2018

Hello. Eva, if you do not spend time on work, then it is unlikely that there will be funds for training and other needs. While you are young and healthy, work, save something, put it in the bank over time and you will be able to live on interest and let's say a small part-time job like you have now. Try earnings, a shift method, you can work for half a year, then take a break. And do not rush with relationships, it is important to always be independent, so that your life and health do not depend on the mood, favor of another person. nine0003

Irina, age: 05/21/2018

If it is impossible to change jobs for a "dream job", you must agree that you need to learn how to live with it. Why are you winding yourself up and exhausting your nerves for nothing. What kind of art are you doing? Does it really require such a heavy investment? Do you have the Internet where there are interest groups; channels where they teach creativity and share the results of their work with each other. Try to bring your creativity to a new qualitative level with hard work, the desire to improve yourself. Participate in all available contests (there are free ones, with prize funds). Do not bring negativity from work into your personal life, separate them from each other. At work, your goal is to earn money for life, and at home you are developing comprehensively and moving towards success, recuperating. Know how to squeeze the most out of the situation, perhaps your depressed state prevents you from seeing a way out of a problem situation. nine0003

Alen , age: 05/23/2018

Eva, I understand you, it is difficult and crowded for people who are intellectual and creative to work as a salesperson, they want development. But now many work as salespeople with higher education, when it is difficult to find another job or specialty, or for other reasons, now is the time. Many have to adapt, but what to do. My friend has a higher education, after studying she went to work in an office, survived for six months, she didn’t like working in a team, believe me, it’s not so sweet in offices when you have to endure the most diverse and often unpleasant colleagues every day, their chicken chatter, stupid jokes, horse laughter, obscenities, etc., for example, read about mobbing in offices. And she went as a seller of bags, if only to work in the department alone. She worked for some time, and opened her own department of bags, now she sits like a hostess, working for herself. In her spare time she is engaged in choreography, painting, studying French. He takes a laptop to work when there are no people, writes articles and sells them on the Internet. I have a normal attitude towards sellers, sometimes in shoes, clothes or cosmetics stores I see such pleasant, well-groomed, friendly girls that it’s expensive to look at and it’s nice to communicate with them. There are bad ones, but they are everywhere. I saw office workers, and people of various high positions - such bastards that they are no match for good girls or women salespeople. At the expense of education, maybe you will finish college, or some courses on your hobby, there are training lessons on the Internet, you can earn money via the Internet - look in this direction. I myself am now probing this topic, tk. I also do not like working in an office and enduring a team that is unpleasant to me. Believe me, this test is to sit with people who are not suitable for you in the same room day after day. They can talk about this, that their ears wither, but you can’t get anywhere, you have to listen. And you probably work alone or at most with a partner, appreciate it) You can tell your friends that you work as a salesman, because such a schedule suits you, but not an office one. In general, people mostly think only about themselves and their problems, but they really don’t care much about who you work for, so don’t stress too much about it. They'll think about it for five minutes, and they'll forget. Live as best you can, as best you can, this is your life, you live not for your friends and their opinions about you, but for yourself, most importantly, you earn a living by honest work, you don’t steal, you don’t deceive anyone, you have time to live, a hobby Many people don't have that time. Good luck. nine0003

Tanya T, age: 05/33/2018

Eva, I’ll add, I don’t advise reading books about success, I used to be fond of it too, but all this is pseudo-psychology, designed for housewives, such is the business. It is better to read the materials of this site, much more useful.

Tanya T, age: 05/33/2018

Many thanks to all who responded for their support, your kindness gives hope. I will continue to work and act, and I believe that an active life position and work always give a positive result, even if not immediately. Thanks again for your support and I wish you all the best, you helped me a lot to understand this. nine0003

Eva, age: 05/22/2018

Eva, can you learn web design? on the Internet there are free training lessons on the basics, there are paid courses in the same place, but they are much cheaper than studying at a university. Then you can work on the Internet on freelance exchanges to look for orders. Maybe you can write to become - this is the work of a copywriter.

Sedge, age: // / 05/22/2018

Eva, young lady, keep it up ;) and all the best to you!! nine0003

Tanya T, age: 33 / 05/22/2018

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90,000 black and black and white: how to recognize depression in chat

Speech reflects individual picture of the human world, so scientists have been studying the specifics of the “depressive language” for several decades. In a study of based on text analysis of 63 Internet forums with more than 6.4 thousand users, psychologists found that the excessive use of absolutist words and expressions in speech is a marker of anxiety, depression and the presence of suicidal thoughts. nine0003

For example, the study found that forums where people discussed anxiety and depression used the words "always" and "nothing" much more often than forums on other topics. It turned out that the more such words a person uses, the higher the level of his mental disorder.

Which markers in speech indicate depression

J. Pennebaker was one of the first researchers who applied machine learning methods to text analysis for the depression of their authors. He took as a basis the diary entries of people undergoing therapy for suicidal tendencies, and based on machine analysis of big data, he identified a number of common features in these entries.

Unreasonably frequent use of the pronouns "I" and "me"

This feature reflects the concentration of depressed people on their experiences and inner world.

Almost every person experiences sadness several times during the day. It occurs when a person thinks that he cannot achieve his desired goal. It may be a trifle - I did not have time for an important meeting. Or a major event - a loved one does not reciprocate. nine0003

There is an unpleasant feeling that it is pointless to continue further actions in a particular direction. At this point, it’s worth stopping and thinking about what went wrong, and most importantly, what needs to be done next, what new goal to focus efforts on.

The difference between depression and a healthy feeling of sadness is that sadness is short-lived. After crying, a person restores emotional balance and can switch to other thoughts and actions. In depression, a person sinks deeper and deeper into the abyss of frustration and hopelessness, falls into despair, feels the hopelessness of his condition. A person does not notice what is happening around him, feels separated from everyone, and the whole world for him shrinks to a small point - himself. nine0003

More words with negative connotation and fewer with positive connotation

Machine algorithms have long been able to recognize the positive or negative intonation of words by their content, for example, by the frequency of using the “not” particle or swear words. They also determine the same by the structure of the sentence and punctuation, for example, by the use of ellipses, exclamation marks and emoticons.

Studies have shown that a depressed person more often describes the events of his life from a negative angle: he says that it did not work out, that he does not deserve respect, which others did not do for him. nine0003

Accordingly, the proportion of words that would cover positive events in life is reduced. David Burns compares such depressive thinking to "binoculars": on the one hand, it magnifies everything bad in life, and on the other hand, it greatly diminishes everything good. This feature is also reflected in written speech.

Using a similar principle, the psychological self-help platform iCognito created a series of free programs using a virtual psychologist chatbot. The most popular was "Anti-depression" - more than 300 thousand people took advantage of it. The chatbot first conducts tests on the international questionnaires PHQ-9 and GAD-7, and then explains how to perform exercises for behavioral activation, the development of emotional awareness and problem solving.

How AI helps detect depression

Our developments have allowed us to collect a unique database of text messages in Russian. We do not identify messages for each user, we only take generalized, anonymous responses and conduct experiments on machine recognition. nine0003

In particular, we analyzed the reports of people who are depressed in terms of what worries them more. We studied both the frequency of mentioning various problems, and the number of words and phrases that people use to describe them. The more a person talks about some kind of trouble, the more, most likely, she worries him.

Experiments have shown that depressed people most often scold themselves. And the level of aggression is just off scale. When the machine first selected a list of messages of this class and we began to work with the database, after 10 minutes we were overcome by severe depression. It turned out that our users are ruthless towards themselves and use the most unflattering epithets: “I'm fat”, “I'm stupid”, “I'm worthless”, “I hate myself”, “I wish I hadn't been born”. nine0003

In second place in terms of frequency of use are thoughts about loneliness: “I am lonely”, “no one needs me”, “I will be left alone”, “no one understands me”. Most of the people who turned to our development came with the feeling that they were fighting this world one on one and there was no one around who could support them. Often this feeling of isolation from everyone is the result of cognitive distortions.

Often people have relatives who sincerely worry about them, friends, colleagues, acquaintances of interest who would be happy to talk and help a person: listen, support with practical advice. However, in depression, we go into voluntary self-isolation, and a vicious circle unwinds: the more a person is sad, the less he communicates. The less he communicates, the more others think that he himself does not want to communicate, and stop interacting with him ...

Further, in descending order of frequency, we have identified the following classes, which coincide with the main symptoms of depression according to the DSM-5.

  • Bad mood, tearfulness, depression: “I feel very bad”, “Life is terrible”, “I want to cry”, “I am unhappy”.

  • Apathy: "I'm tired of everything", "I don't want to do anything", "Indifference to everything", "No interest in anything".

  • Fatigue: “Tired of everything”, “Tired of living”, “I don’t have time to rest”, “I don’t have the strength to do anything”. nine0003

  • Feelings of helplessness and incompetence: “I can't cope”, “I won't achieve anything”, “I can't change anything”, “I'm doing everything wrong”.

  • Self-harm and suicidal thoughts: “I want to die”, “Kill me”, “It would be better if I didn’t exist”, “I have nothing to live for”, “I want to cut myself”.

Relatively frequent mentions of increased anxiety, irritability and anger - such conditions accompany depressive disorders more often than many people think. nine0003

When analyzing texts, we found that people in general rarely mention the physical symptoms of depression: sleep disturbances, eating disorders, mental or motor retardation. This is probably due to the fact that the level of public literacy regarding the nature of depression is still low. Most people in the post-Soviet countries still consider depression to be a manifestation of “weak character” and “laziness”, and not a serious mental disorder requiring treatment. It is highly likely that people may not be aware of the accompanying symptoms of this mental disorder, and therefore may not associate their problems with sleep, appetite, concentration or motor activity with depression.

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