A few weeks ago, my life came to a halt when I got a phone call halfway through my day. I stopped typing up an essay for a class and decided that somethings are worth more than a good grade.
A friend of mine had attempted suicide. The stress from school and life was a bit too much for them to handle.
This is a bright, young individual who I know is better then a few bad marks on a sheet of paper. They were not the problem. The problem was that college life had implanted the idea that anything less than perfection isn’t good enough. It breaks my heart to know that they think their best isn’t good enough.
We have all been to the library during finals week and have seen the results. Students putting excrutiating detail and effort into studying for a test or essay so then can get a step closer to a degree. Sleepless students who are stressed out about the thought that they might not pass. The pursuit of higher education that, according to the Suicide Prevention Resource Center, is killing students “at a rate between 6.5 and 7.5 per 100,000 among college students, approximately half the rate for nonstudent college-aged adults.”
Students are afraid of what the people close to them will think if they fail. How our parents and relatives might be disappointed in them if they don’t graduate, or how it’s now harder to get a job without a college degree.
Dropping the class won’t solve the problem either. Too many dropped classes and the college might make you pay them back for the lost financial aid, adding to student’s stress levels.
And our lives and problems are not limited to just this school. Work adds a new category to balance. Some students might have to skip class for the day, missing important information, and work a shift instead.
No degree or class is worth your life. Every single student on this campus is worth more then any grade. Taking your own life does not solve your problem, but instead leaves the loved ones in your life to face the world without you.
That being said, you are the victim here, not the source of the problem. No one should blame you for your attempt. Desperation and pressure makes suicide seem like a way out of a horrible situation. Anyone who tells you your attempt was a grab for attention or idiotic is not going to help you.
Do not be ashamed to ask for help from the right people. The anxiety may seem like it prevents you from moving forward, but you’ll find plenty of people, even ones you don’t know, are willing to drop everything to help you.
We even have a club here on campus dedicated to helping students in this situation, the Active Minds Club.
Help is everywhere around you, I can’t emphasize that enough. From absolute strangers to trusted friends and family, there is help. You can even come in and talk to me. I will go out of my way to make sure I can help you.
if you don’t feel like talking to someone in person, you can always call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text a professional online at Suicide Prevention Lifeline website. They are always ready to help.