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So your friend says they’re not okay…now what?

It can be hard to know what to do if a friend has shared they're not okay. While we may genuinely want to support them – it's easy to feel stuck for words and solutions.

So what can you do when this happens? Have a look below where we've broken it down into three key steps.

  • Listen. Often the best way to support someone is to just allow them to have the space to voice what they're experiencing. Remember to remain open-minded and non-judgemental as much as you can. Allow your friend the time and space to talk through what's been happening (i.e. don't rush the conversation). A helpful thing to remember when considering this is 'the 3 R's' – repeat, reflect and respond. If you're wanting more clarification on how to use 'the 3 R's' feel free to have a read of our blog post on 'Just Listening'.
  • Encourage action. This may include exploring ways that your friend has coped in the past, asking how you can best support them and helping them find professional support. If you're not sure what professional support is out there – encouraging them to reach out to their GP to organize a 'Mental Health Care Plan' is a good first step. You can also contact LETSS on 1800 013 075 or at www.letss.org.au, we can assist with exploring and accessing support options that may be available.
  • Check in. Pop a reminder in your phone/diary to follow up with your friend and see how they're going – this might be in a couple weeks' time or a couple days, depending on how they're going. Do your best to stay in contact and be there for them – just knowing someone's there who genuinely cares can make a huge difference.

Having these conversations can be really difficult, but it's also really important. For further information and resources don't hesitate to visit https://www.ruok.org.au/ - where they have more in-depth information on services and resources that are available, as well as helpful sentence stems for checking in with your friends. 

(Photo from Unsplash by Joshua Ness)

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We would like to Acknowledge that the land we provide a service on today is the traditional lands for the Kaurna people and that we respect their spiritual relationship with their Country. We also acknowledge the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the Adelaide region and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.        

 

 
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