How to Spot the Signs of Suicide

Trigger Warning: Mentions of Suicide 


Mia Souther, Chief of Staff, Editor of Wellness

Every year 1 in 5 teens seriously consider suicide, so becoming knowledgeable of the signs is crucial to spreading awareness and prevention. 

There is no stereotype of an individual who could be considering suicide. You never really know what someone may be battling. Do not assume because the individual has great grades or a lot of friends that they are immune to suicide. 

Signs to Look out for:

  1. Frequently talking about death
  2. Giving away possessions with significant meaning
  3. Feeling hopeless 
  4. Increased use of drugs/alcohol 

Take Action:

If someone shares with you that they are considering suicide or if you notice that they are showing signs of suicide reach out to a trusted adult, or use the student care line. Never promise secrecy to the individual, speak up and get them the help they need. If immediate help is needed call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text ‘help’ to 741741. Do not wait to reach out to a trusted adult for help or use the student care line, act with urgency. 

If someone confides in you that they are considering suicide or talking about the above signs during a conversation be sure to use phrases like: “I am glad you are sharing this with me,” “Is there any way I can help,” “I care about you,” or “I am here to listen.”

It is never acceptable to use phrases such as: “Get over it,” “It’s not a big deal,” “I don’t care,” etc… These phrases are invalidating and will only reinforce their feelings. The goal is for them to leave the conversation feeling safer and less alone. 

If you or a person you know is struggling with suicide you are not alone. There are resources available to help you. It’s never too late to reach out and get the care you need.