You don’t have to be an expert to help a friend
The aim of the Queen’s TALKS campaign is to spread the word that you don’t have to be an expert to help a friend. Each fall the Peer Support Centre holds this week-long campaign to encourage members of the Queen’s community to support each other in times of need.
TALKS is an acronym that stands for: Tell them you care, Ask gently, Listen attentively, Know your resources, and Stay in touch.
An important note:
Social support is important to overcome a personal or mental health challenge; however, involving other mental health resources is key for a proper support system. Make sure to draw from the community of support resources, such as family members, a residence Don, counsellors, or other mental health professionals.
If you are really concerned about your friend or suspect that they are at risk of suicide or other serious personal harm, talk to someone else about your concerns. Encourage your friend to visit their doctor or a mental health professional immediately. If you friend is in immediate danger of suicide, call 911, and stay with them until help has arrived.
Remember to be gentle with yourself. You are not responsible for your friend’s wellness, and people need a community of support and a willingness for recovery to overcome a challenge. Make sure that you are not the only person supporting your friend, and make sure that you are getting the support you need as well.