These are some of the reasons why people consider suicide:
- You may want relief from painful circumstances that you feel helpless to change
- You may feel you have to do something huge in order to be taken seriously
- You may feel no hope that things will change, you will always feel bad, and that nobody will ever understand
- You may want desperately to control the loss of a relationship
- You may not recognize any options or that this crisis will end in time
Your situation may be that you have:
- Lost a significant relationship, confused and scared about how you will carry on
- Been rejected by someone you really want to be in your life
- Had a real blow to your self-esteem
- Been telling yourself that you're bad and want to punish yourself
- Strong reactions to change in your family, in where you live, in status
- Lost a friend or family member through illness, accident, or suicide
- Feelings of worthlessness, alienation, loneliness, homesickness, anger
- Confusing thoughts which interfere with life, with sleep, with school
Suicidal thoughts are not uncommon among college students. You may be:
- Tall or short, attractive or plain, an easy-study student or a study slave, a leader or a loner, a male or a female, loud or quiet, aggressive or compliant, popular or unpopular
- Lost inside yourself right now; uninvolved with others, feel that life has lost all meaning
- Moody, grouchy, like you're on an emotional roller coaster
Twelve things that YOU can remember and do that will help
- Suicidal thoughts can be useful signals that you want your life to be different and rid of pain, not that you want to be dead
- Contact one of the crisis resource numbers listed at the bottom of this page. Talking about it is the first step towards [re]gaining control
- Be with other people whom you trust and appreciate; avoid "downer" people
- Reach out to the safest person you can find--an RD, RA, instructor, brother, sister, mother, father, minister, old friend...someone. Let the person know how you're feeling and that you need to talk
- Try to get quality sleep--sleep affects mood more than most people realize. If you're having trouble sleeping, cut out coffee, soft drinks with caffeine, tea. Try a warm shower/bath before going to bed. If noise bothers you, get soft ear plugs from a pharmacist; do deep muscle relaxation or other calming technique
- Avoid dangerous situations. (Alchohol is particularly ill-advised because it is a depressant in the long run, and compromises self-control and judgment. Mixing alcohol and pills can permanently damage your brain, liver, nervous system)
- Think of a time when you felt good about you; a success; a time you helped someone else; how you've been down before and gotten up again. Ask yourself: what is the difference; what part of me have I lost touch with that I need to reconnect to?
- Give yourself comfort--warm baths/showers, a good book, music with positive associations, a favorite hobby...Say to yourself, "I deserve this." Likewise try to accept comfort and support from others as readily as you would give it
- Start writing down your thoughts and feelings in a private journal. Be sure to include what you want to change, move towards
- List of 5 things that you can do when you're feeling desperate. Write them on a note card and put it in an easily remembered/accessible place
- Try to solve problems and "take care of business" one day at a time so that your worries don't mount up any higher than they are now. This will also give you a feeling that you are more in control of your life, and moving in a better direction
- Write this note (or your personal variation of) & keep it with you:
My suicidal crisis is temporary.
This pain can be survived.
Help is available.
I am not alone.
I will get better.
Campus and Local Resource Phone Numbers
- Counseling & Consultation Services, Northern Michigan University (top floor of Hedgcock) -- 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Monday - Friday: 227-2980
- Residence Hall Directors and Advisors
- Public Safety and Police Services - 227-2151
- Pathways (Community Mental Health) - 24 hour crisis #: 225-1181