How do you talk to someone who may be suicidal?
Are you worried about someone who may have suicidal thoughts? Allowing them to talk about how they feel is extremely important. Here’s some advice on how to get the conversation started.Read more
During Mental Health Week and beyond, take the time to notice whether you have a work colleague who is struggling. You may see that they are becoming withdrawn or not coping with their workload.
During Mental Health Week and beyond, take the time to notice whether you have a work colleague who is struggling. You may see that they are becoming withdrawn or not coping with their workload. If they are going through a tough time, there are things you can do to support them.
This sounds so simple, but it lets them know that you are open to a conversation and can offer support. Make it clear that you’re asking about them, not about the progress of a project they might be working on. You can listen to their experiences and talk openly about mental health.
Ask if they want to go out for lunch or take a walk.
Is there something you can do to ease their workload?
This can be your organisation’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP), their GP or a counselling service. You can help them to find further information about the support available.
Follow-up and ask them how the appointment went or just let them know that you’re available to talk.
The type of support you can offer will depend on how close your relationship is with your colleague, so use the suggestions above as a guide and choose what will work for you. You aren’t a counsellor, so you are not expected to come up with solutions to their problems, but you can listen and help them seek professional support.
If you feel like you are unable to start a conversation or provide support, speak to your manager about what you have been noticing – you don’t have to go through this alone.
If you need to talk to a counsellor, call SuicideLine Victoria 1300 651 251.
If it is an emergency, call 000.