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What is wrong with my sister and how do I get her to seek help?

Community Member

For half of her life my sister has been smoking weed, I personally don't have much of an issue with people smoking weed but she feels like she needs to be high ALL the time. Lately I've started to see a side of her that worries me, she talks to herself out loud, over analyses the psychology of the most simple things to an excessive degree, has mental breakdowns where she acts hysterical and commonly repeats the same phrases or words over and over, she's also recently started expressing very real suicidal thoughts. I've asked her to seek help from a psychologist or psychiatrist but she refuses to as she believes weed is the only treatment she needs.

Does this behaviour match any specific mental or psychological disorders? What sort of help or treatment does she need and how do I get her to seek it? Maybe she will agree to see a specialist if I can show her the similarities between the way she has been acting and the symptoms of what you guys believe is causing this behaviour.

4 Replies 4

Hi Jacobb,

Welcome to the forums! We're so grateful that you have reached out here, we know that it is not an easy thing to do, but it is so important that you have. We're really sorry to hear what your sister is going through at the moment, but she sounds very lucky to have such a caring sibling like yourself. Please know that you've come to a safe space to talk about these thoughts and feelings and our wonderful community is here to offer as much support and advice as you need.

If you feel up to it, we'd also recommend getting in touch with our Support Service which is available 24/7 on 1300 22 4636 or you can visit on our website www.beyondblue.org.au/getsupport for online chat. One of our friendly counsellors will be able to give you some information and advice to help you and your sister. 

You might also find some helpful advice on our page "Worried about someone suicidal" https://www.beyondblue.org.au/the-facts/suicide-prevention/worried-about-someone-suicidal

We hope that you keep checking back in with us to let us know how you are going, whenever you feel up to it.

Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear Jacobb~
Welcome here to the Forum, I’m glad Sophie_M was able to meet you and give some support, her suggestion are very sensible I

I’m sorry for the delay in hearing anything further from the Forum, please be assured it's not you or the subject of your post, just sometimes things do not work as we would wish.

I think for a start your sister is very lucky to have someone care so much, it has however placed a heavy burden on you, not only to try to hep but also worrying if she might take her life.

So first I’ll talk about you. You need support yourself in this most stressful time, is there anyone in your family, or perhaps a friend, who you can lean on at the moment?

Also are you the only one concerned about your sister, or are others too?

Before going further please realize that if you feel your sister is in immediate danger of taking her life ring 000. To be blunt it is better to have a live sister that may resent this then not to have a sister and feel great grief and self-reproach.

In situations of doubt you can ring the Suicide Call Back Service (1300 659 467) who are there just as much for one that cares as anyone else. They give good advice.

Now with your sister, it is really up to a doctor to diagnose what is wrong, however heavy long-term use of weed can have all sorts of effects on a person’s mental health and abilities, and specialist therapy tends to be a must. Having your sister’s need to use cannabis all the time is not something that will be easily treated in a short time, and it may be there are underlying fact’s that need treating too.

So I guess, apart from your own support, the hard part will be convincing her to seek help. Is there anyone who has the best chance of doing this?


Community Champion
Community Champion

You sound like you care very much for your sister. All I will add to is there are also pages on the beyond blue website you might want to look at. Through a Google search -

- beyond blue drugs
- Beyond blue supporting someone

While I agree with Croix about finding someone who might be best to talk with her, if your sister does not see any problem there is little you can do at that time. Continue to provide support.

Have a look at the pages mentioned above and hopefully you will get some ideas to help you.


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi Jacobb, welcome and I thought I had replied to your comment.

With an addiction as is smoking weed or it could be alcohol, people may believe that this is the solution to all their problems, but once it becomes a daily need, then they are using it to help them cover up the problems that should be addressed, and I say this from experience, once needing alcohol for my depression.

Now I haven't had a drop of alcohol for a long time.

As much as you try and stop your sister from smoking weed, the decision has to be made by herself and you could direct her towards 'al-anon' if she has no one except for her doctor to contact.

An addiction may seem to be the solution but know that it's only preventing the person from receiving the help they need.