Suicide is reported to be the second leading cause of death of college aged students. The University of Florida wants to create living, learning and working environments that promote self-care and encourage support of our friends and colleagues. It is not unusual in the course of studies or work for a person to encounter challenges which may feel overwhelming; perhaps the loss of a significant person, failure to achieve one’s goals or changes in important relationships. Sometimes the challenges leave a person wondering if life in such circumstances is sustainable, whether it is worth continuing to live.
We know that hopelessness, despair and feeling alienated from others are leading warning signs for people feeling suicidal. We also know that being able to talk with someone about what is troubling and hurtful can lead to different and life affirming perspectives. Expressions of concern by friends, faculty and staff, the presence of helping resources combined with the personal effort to reach out and utilize help can and often does help.
The materials and resources provided on this page are meant to serve as starting places to better understand the risk factors, warning signs and importance of getting help for persons feeling suicidal. Each of us matters; we can make a difference in another person’s life. If at any point you wish to consult with person trained to listen and provide support to persons who are suicidal, please call:
The Counseling and Wellness Center: 352-392-1575
The Alachua County Crisis Center: 352-264-6789
Sometimes persons in distress will post their thoughts and feelings on social media sites or through other means of electronic communication. If you read or see something that suggests your friend is feeling hopeless or in despair, consider taking one of the following actions:
• If possible communicate directly to the person expressing your concern. This expression of concern and inquiry on your part may be just what the person needs to get help. You can review the suggestions in the following resource for helpful tips on warning signs and how you can help: The Danger of Suicide: Responding to Students
FaceBook, in collaboration with the American Association of Suicidology, has developed a way for users to bring attention to persons in distress. Please see the following link for a description of this program and how to access the assistance: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline