Taking Action

  • Is your friend taking risks that scare you or encouraging you to take risks with them?
  • Does your friend talk about death or express fears that something might happen to them?
  • Don’t assume that because your friend is smart that they will make good decisions about risky behaviors.

We all have the responsibility to help and protect people we care about, even if we think it will make them angry or betray their trust in order to get them help. Losing a friendship is better than losing a friend. Don’t be a friend who lives with guilt because you didn’t take action.

Action Steps

  1. consult with others (friends, instructors, parents, RA’s, co-workers, help-line, Campus Health Service
  2. figure out resources
  3. refer to counseling
  4. accompany your friend to get help
  5. call their parents if indicated
  6. call 911 if it seems like an emergency
  • Avoid judgmental labels, such as calling your friend names.
  • Avoid blaming, yelling.
  • Avoid discussing threats of future possible harm (“this will happen to you if…”).
  • Avoid dumping your anger on them or making empty threats.