You may have heard it's Bell 'Let's Talk' Day, but what are you planning to do? No-one knows how devastating mental health problems can be in a family quite like Tom Budd. After losing not one, but two sons to suicide, he's made advocating for mental health a central purpose in his life. Along with Jessica Samuels of the Canadian Mental Health Association, we talk about the best ways to get these conversations going.
"From there, I actually didn't care if I lived for a period of time," said Budd about his feelings after losing a second son to suicide. But he has found a path forward but dealing with the underlying mental health issues head-on. "I saw a need to go out there and help," he said "and try to reduce the stigma and a host of mental health issues and I've done that."
Budd said the best way to get these conversations going is to share his own tragic story. "I go first," he said. As painful as it is to retell those tragic events in his life, it helps people let down their guard and open up about their own struggles. "I've done that," he said. "It's helped others and it's helped me."
Jessica Samuels from Canadian Mental Health said it's about opening your heart up to the people in your life. "Approach the conversation with compassion," she said. "I care. I'm here to help. How can I help."