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Suicide on College Campuses


Replies to: Suicide on College Campuses

  • atomicPACMAN07atomicPACMAN07 255 replies35 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @SouthFloridaMom9 thanks for bringing that up I didn't think of that as a possibility. We can only speculate but nonetheless this is a sad misfortune...
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  • SouthFloridaMom9SouthFloridaMom9 3416 replies30 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    It is very sad. :(

    The kid from UF broke my heart. But his mom did a video, I think to try to help others. God bless her.
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  • 4beardolls4beardolls 1469 replies18 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @yellowgranite56, your post was a jolt to me since DS is a second year student there bracing for finals this week and next week. Vandy is known for having the balanced campus life and voted having the happiest students so this news is particularly disturbing to me. I am very sorry for the families.
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  • delurk1delurk1 218 replies5 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    It's also true that granting a lot of attention to people who die by suicide, holding vigils etc. may prompt someone who is teetering on the brink to take that desperate act. It's hard to know what the right response is but Penn State may have wanted to keep it relatively quiet so no one else gets any ideas.
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  • MidwestDad3MidwestDad3 2172 replies14 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @bodangles It wouldn't be the first time Penn State has covered something up . . .
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  • Much2learnMuch2learn 4610 replies168 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    "administrators are trying to keep a positive image for the campus and suicides make parents think twice of how much value their hard earned dollars are getting if kids are depressed there..."

    Right. Many administrator see it as their role to protect the University.

    They are worried that reporting more transparently will hurt their total number of applications and yield. They think most parents and students will think that if they don't report it, it did not happen, just like sexual assault.
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  • Gator88NEGator88NE 6458 replies203 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    The rate of student suicide at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology continues to be notably higher than the national average for college campuses, a painful and concerning statistic for leaders of the premier university who have for years tried to improve the school’s suicide prevention, mental health, and counseling programs.

    Over the past decade, the university’s student suicide rate has been 10.2 per 100,000 students, according to a Globe review of public records as well as university and media reports. More recently MIT’s suicide rate has been even higher; over the past five years the campus has reported 12.5 suicides per 100,000 students.

    The increasing rate has been driven by the school’s undergraduate population, whose suicide rate in the past decade has outpaced that of the school’s graduate students — 12.6 to 8.5.

    The national average for college campuses is roughly between 6.5 and 7.5 suicides per 100,000 students, according to three major studies that looked at undergraduate and graduate student suicides from 1980 to 2009.

    For more statistics like the following:

    1.5 students out of 100 students have attempted suicide.

    Men commit suicide 4 times as often as women, women attempt suicide 3 times as often as men.


    The "What can parents do" section outlines what I find us following with DD...
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  • Sportsman88Sportsman88 1571 replies13 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited April 2016
    First, I'm deeply sorry for your loss @MaineLonghorn. Unfortunately, I've seen the pain survivors experience too many times.

    It's a balancing act between reporting suicide, supporting survivors, and remembering the deceased for more than the act of suicide while not giving attention that glorifies the act in the eyes of other distressed individuals. I wouldn't say it puts it in someone's head but more makes it seem like a more valid option to someone already contemplating suicide.

    People need to not be afraid to ask a de stressed individual if they are thinking about suicide. Often it's comforting that they can say it out loud for the first time. No, not everyone gives signs and many would be surprised at some who have contemplated suicide in a serious manner.
    edited April 2016
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  • MassmommMassmomm 3923 replies81 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    There are probably more suicides on college campuses than we know. Many are not reported to the media out of respect for the student's family, usually at their request. Last year Wellesley had a suicide that didn't make the papers. A few months ago, a student who had had to withdraw due to anorexia died of it. High pressure environments (and honestly, any college can be a high pressure environment) bring out self-harming and suicidal behavior in vulnerable students, and you don't always know who those students are until they are exposed to such an environment.
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  • higheredrockshigheredrocks 234 replies0 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    There's the flip side to this in that not every student "found dead in their rooms, no sign of foul play" is a suicide. Parents are just as reluctant to disclose a child's accidental drug overdose as they would be a suicide. Several years ago, we lost a student to auto-erotic asphyxiation. The parents absolutely favored language that implied a drug overdose or suicide. No one was trying to cover anything up, you just do what you think is right and listen to the family when possible.

    I'm not sure that there's always that much intent behind the death announcements. Sometimes you make the best decision you can on short notice. When my husband committed suicide, the funeral home went with "died unexpectedly at home" -- definitely suicide code for a man in his 40s, but perhaps not as blunt as I would have been if you had given me a week. I had a eleven-year-old to worry about, I didn't care what the obituary said as long as they didn't lie about it.. My husband's colleagues, students, and outside collaborators all knew what happened, as did the parents of my son's 6th grade classmates. More than 5 years later and two other children in my son's class (of 120) have lost parents to suicide. I suspect that the rising rates are not just with college students, although I can't imagine anything worse than losing a child.
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  • PAO2008PAO2008 622 replies5 threadsRegistered User Member
    @higheredrocks and @MaineLonghorn So sorry to both of you for your loss. Having lost a child myself, I can relate to the deep grief and sense of loss but not to the other feelings that accompany losing a loved one to suicide.
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