Hey Mounties! My name is Oliver Batchilder, a third-year Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) student. This year, I have the incredible opportunity to serve as the Health and Wellness Intern at the Wellness Centre. I am thrilled to step into this role, not only to collaborate with the team at the Wellness Centre but also to engage with all of you through these “Talking Wellness” columns. My aim is to provide insights, tips, and support on various wellness topics, ensuring that our campus remains a space of health, safety, and positivity.
With Homecoming coming up soon, alumni will be returning, current students will be uniting,and the atmosphere will be buzzing with excitement. While the energy and nostalgia of
Homecoming cannot be matched, it is also a time when safety and personal well-being
should take centre stage.
Understanding Alcohol Consumption: For many, Homecoming involves the festive cheer that comes with alcohol. But with this, there is a responsibility to understand and respect one’s limits. Everyone’s tolerance is unique, and it is essential to be aware of how much you can handle without it affecting your judgment or health. One common misconception is that alcohol’s effects can be “diluted” with more drinks. While this is not the case, staying hydrated by drinking water between alcoholic beverages can help pace your consumption and prevent overindulgence. Additionally, consuming food before drinking can slow down alcohol absorption, ensuring that its effects do not hit too hard or too fast. There is a mantra I would like to share: “It is always okay to crush a water.” In the midst of social gatherings, especially those where alcohol is present, choosing water is not just a healthy choice, but also a respected one. It is a simple yet effective way to pace oneself, stay hydrated, and ensure that the evening remains enjoyable from start to finish. Remember, taking care of ourselves and making responsible choices does not diminish the fun— it enhances it.
The Value of Companionship: There is an old saying that there is safety in numbers, and this could not be more true during Homecoming. Keeping close to friends ensures not only a good time but also a safer experience. With the crowd’s hustle and bustle, it is easy to get separated or lose track of time and place. By sticking together, friends can look out for one another, ensuring everyone is feeling good and staying safe. If someone has had too much to drink or seems uncomfortable in a situation, a friend can step in, offer support, or help them get home safely.
Planning Ahead: A significant part of Homecoming safety revolves around transportation. No celebration is worth the risks of drinking and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Before heading out, it is crucial to establish a transportation plan. Whether that means designating a sober driver or arranging for a taxi, the key is to ensure no one gets behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, cannabis, or other drugs.
Trust Your Instincts: Homecoming is a whirlwind of events, interactions, and emotions. Amidst this, it is vital to trust your gut feelings. If a situation does not feel right, or if you are getting uncomfortable vibes from someone, it is okay to step away. Personal safety and comfort should always be a priority.
Maintaining Respect: Homecoming is a shared experience, and everyone is there to have a good time. In this collective celebration, it becomes paramount to respect individual boundaries and ensure the safety and comfort of everyone in attendance. Consent, in all its forms, stands at the forefront of these interactions. Whether it is a conversation, a dance, or any other form of physical touch, mutual agreement and understanding are crucial. Each person’s comfort level varies, and recognizing and respecting those boundaries is essential. After all, the essence of Homecoming is collective joy, and a fun and memorable night for one person should never be the cause of discomfort or distress for another. Homecoming is a cherished tradition, a blend of past memories and a creation of new ones. While the excitement is infectious, it is important to be mindful of our actions and their implications. By focusing on safety, respecting boundaries, and looking out for one another, we can ensure that Homecoming remains a great time for everyone involved.