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Worried About Someone?

If you are responding to a crisis

The Student Support Centre has helpful advice for when you are Responding to a person/student in Crisis. We've also produced a helpful document for After a Crisis.

When might I be concerned?

  • There are many reasons for becoming concerned about a person. A person may speak to you about a problem they have, or you may notice something about them that worries you. You may notice changes in a friend’s appearance. They may appear anxious or withdrawn, or depressed. You may feel that alcohol or drug use is excessive. There may even be very serious concerns about self-harm or around suicide.

How do I talk to someone about their problems?

  • First and foremost be willing to listen and offer supportive understanding. Your friend may want to talk and listening to them is often the first step to your friend feeling better.
  • Remember that it’s OK to approach a friend with your concerns.
  • Make sure you take care of yourself: trying to support someone can be difficult, especially if there are serious issues present.
  • Don’t try to solve your friends’ problems – this is not your responsibility and it’s not up to you to solve their difficulties. Urge them to seek professional help.

What else should I do?

  • Depending on the problem you can point your friend in the direction of support within the University e.g. the Student Support Centre or Counselling and Wellbeing Service.
  • If you are concerned about someone taking their own life, or seriously harming someone else, seek urgent advice from someone in the University. If you are unable to do this or the situation becomes very urgent contact the person's GP, if known, or take them to the nearest Accident and Emergency centre or NHS walk-in centre. For further information, please read the "What should I do when someone is in crisis?" chart.
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