08/21/2014 04:27 pm ET Updated Aug 21, 2014

How A Friend's 'Betrayal' Saved This Woman's Life

Helping a friend who doesn’t necessarily want your help is tough. But sometimes it’s the only option.

Marisa Lancione, a mental health advocate who’s been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, joined HuffPost Live host Nancy Redd today to discuss how a friend's intervention saved her life.

“I started struggling in my first year of university,” said Lancione. “I was self-harming, I had become basically a hermit, I wouldn’t leave my room, I wasn’t eating [and] I started skipping classes.”

Lancione explains that because she was in university at the time, it was easy to fake being OK and happy when her parents would call to check in on her. Thankfully, her friend observed what was going on and intervened.

“She dragged me to university health services, forcefully,” recalled Lancione. “The ultimate betrayal [was when] she called my parents, and my parents came and got me and removed me from university, essentially, because they were concerned I might end up taking my own life.”

Like Lancione, many people struggling with mental health issues find it difficult to ask for help. As she concludes, “I really needed those people to intervene and get me the help I needed at the time.”

To hear more of the conversation, watch the full HuffPost Live segment here.