Each day in the U.S., an average of three college students die from suicide. That’s three extended families, three constellations of friends, and three campuses getting this terrible news each and every day. Most of those who die are suffering from depression when they kill themselves.
Fortunately, all of us in the Loyola community can learn how best to protect ourselves and each other from depression and suicide. The Counseling Center is focused on getting the word out about these important issues. Our main goals are to help students to:
- Minimize depression by learning how to bounce back;
- Recognize the warning signs of depression and suicide and;
- Learn how to get help - for yourself and for others.
Learn How to Bounce Back
Being resilient means being able to cope, and even thrive, while under stress. It means being able to recover from setbacks and disappointments and not be dragged down by them—but even to grow stronger. Resilience can be learned, and college is a great time to practice. Look for our tables and activities across campus teaching ways to build resilience, both in ourselves and in our community.
Recognize the Warning Signs
When a person is depressed or suicidal, he or she will usually give off certain signs—but many people do not know how to recognize these signs. Please come to the Counseling Center or call us to learn the signs that someone might be at risk—signs like: sleeping all the time, withdrawing from friends, and neglecting one’s appearance—and the signs of especially urgent risk, such as agitation, impulsiveness, hopelessness, and extreme guilt.
Even when such signs are not evident, many suicidal people actually warn of their intention, but too often those around them dismiss the warnings or are not sure what to do about them. We offer information on how best to react if, for instance, you see a worrisome status update or hear a statement like, “It doesn’t matter anymore,” or “I wish I were dead.”
How To Get Help
If anyone you know, including yourself, is struggling with suicidal thoughts, get help immediately. If it is during office hours, call the Counseling Center at 410-617-CARE (2273). Otherwise, at any hour of day or night, contact an RA or GRC/Assistant Director of Student Life, and they can reach one of us. If you are with someone at risk and cannot get them to the Counseling Center, don’t leave them alone. Contact one of the above or the Department of Public Safety (410-617-5911) and stay with the person until help arrives.
Finally, if you are worried about a friend, a roommate, or yourself, visit us any weekday, 8:30-5:00, in Humanities Center 150 (up the spiral steps in the turret, near the big curving bench), or check out our website: Helping a Friend
We Care. We’re here to help. Let’s Talk.