People Are Sharing Nonobvious Signs That Are Actually A Cry For Help, And It's Eye-Opening

    Never would've noticed some of these...

    Recently, Reddit user u/IncessantlyBored asked the question, "What is a sign of a 'cry for help' that isn’t obvious to the average person?" People provided fascinating, important examples of small behavioral changes in others that can be signs that something is wrong.

    Woman sitting and looking sad with sunlight on her face

    Here's what they shared:

    1. "Reaching out and being overly nice to friends both close and casual in hopes that they will reciprocate and eventually ask them how they’re doing, so that when they open up, it’s not about being a burden but because they were prompted to do so."


    2. "Giving away a lot of personal possessions without wanting anything in return."


    3. "Lack of interest. Is a gamer all of a sudden no longer interested in games? Gardener let his plants die? Social butterfly now hides in a cave?"


    Woman sitting amid small potted plants

    4. "The person stops caring about their appearance and neglects their hygiene and grooming because in their mind they are thinking, It doesn't matter, so why bother?"


    5. "Excessive drinking when they usually don't."


    6. "When someone is constantly busy so they don’t give themselves time to think. Also, when someone gives up on a lot of basic things, like cleaning or washing up, because they can’t think about anything except what’s bothering them."


    7. "Sleeping all day and having no interest."


    Person lying on a bed in the fetal posistion

    8. "Becoming tearful more easily than normal for the person."


    9. "Impulsive, out-of-character bad decisions — getting a neck tattoo, buying a new car, that sort of thing."


    10. "When someone has obviously been crying or tears up without apparent provocation, even in a very public setting. It can be a sign that they're in too much pain even to try masking it."


    Person standing in front of a wave crashing on the rocks

    11. "When they start cutting off contact. If that outgoing, happy person suddenly 'just isn't up to it' or always says, 'Maybe some other time,' then something is wrong."


    12. "Marked differences in behavior where the person becomes way more positive and energetic than normal. We tend to think of these sorts of changes as being good, but any sudden and large-enough change in behavior is something you need to keep an eye on. This is especially true if they are going from a very negative pattern of thinking/behavior into an über-positive one very quickly."


    13. "Saying 'I'm sorry' for everything or taking the blame for things that shouldn't even have a blame."


    Woman sitting at a kitchen table grimacing and holding her hand to her forehead

    14. "Purposely avoiding sad and difficult topics. Sometimes when a person is constantly feeling like shit, the last thing they want to do is bring up more negativity when hanging out with people they enjoy being around. Oftentimes, being with friends or family can be a brief escape from always feeling awful, and so, bringing up negative topics can ruin this feeling of escape and make the depression feel never-ending and suffocating."


    15. "Strange habits regarding food — loss of appetite, binge eating, refusing to eat in front of people, constantly counting calories, obsession with fitness."


    Overhead view of person sitting in front of an open laptop eating a slice of pizza and holding a cup of coffee

    16. "Oversharing and a lack of a filter go hand in hand with depression."


    17. "Becoming attached to objects or other nonhuman things is one I have noticed quite a lot in some people I know who have struggled."


    18. "People who are suffering and feeling isolated will start to lose their ability to thermoregulate. They will feel cold all the time. This will lead them to wear extra layers or heavier clothes than would be normal for conditions, take longer, hotter showers, and always be the first to grab a throw to cuddle under."


    And finally:

    19. "When someone says, 'Nah, I’m fine.' It's not always the truth."


    In conclusion, check in on your friends, family, and people who insist they're OK — especially if you think something's up.

    Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.

    The National Alliance on Mental Illness is 1-888-950-6264 (NAMI) and provides information and referral services; is an association of mental health professionals from more than 25 countries who support efforts to reduce harm in therapy.

    The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255. Other international suicide helplines can be found at befrienders.orgThe Trevor Project, which provides help and suicide-prevention resources for LGBTQ youth, is 1-866-488-7386. You can also text TALK to 741741 for free, anonymous 24/7 crisis support in the US and UK from the Crisis Text Line.