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Suicide Resources

Suicide resources and options at BV West

Hannah Holladay and Mikaela Schmitt

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It is important for Blue Valley West students to know that the adults in this building care deeply about each one of them. We have a variety of ways we can support students who might be struggling with depression, anxiety, or other issues. Our teachers, counselors, school psychologist, school social worker, success coach, and our administrative team are dedicated to providing the supports and resources we have to help our meet the unique needs of each of our students. There is no shame in seeking help and there should be no hesitation to let an adult know if a friend is in need. We pride ourselves on being a FAMILY at BVW where we collectively care about and look out for each other.”

— BV West Principal Brett Potts

 

Helpful Resources

-National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255

-Student Wellbeing: www.bluevalleyk12.org/studentwellbeing

-Youth Suicide Information: www.jasonfoundation.com

-Johnson County Mental Health Resources: www.jocogov.org/suicideprevention

-BV West Counselor Offices: rooms 315 and 359

Know the Warning Signs

-sudden changes in behavior

-avoiding friends, activities

-feelings of sadness, guilt, worthlessness

-poor concentration, can’t make decisions

-changes in eating or sleeping habits

-increased risk taking (drugs/alcohol, reckless driving, sexual behavior)

-sudden “happiness” following a period of depression

-lack of interest in future plans

-making final arrangements

-suicide threats or talks of death

 

In Kansas, suicide is the second leading cause of death for people ages 10 to 34, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.  Suicide is a real issue among teens everywhere, and the steps to prevention are knowledge that every student should be aware of.

Students that are struggling are often unaware of the resources and the different types of support that are accessible to them both inside and outside of school.

“We have a list of different therapists and we’ve made relationships with them, so we can always recommend, or if someone is looking for somebody specific, we can give them feedback on who to see,” school counselor Kimberly Urenda said.

School counselors and trusted adults can provide crucial tools as well as different opportunities for students to receive individualized help. The district has established distinct protocols for suicide prevention, and is connected to various sources that may be beneficial to students. Recovery is achievable if one seeks help and finds healthy ways to deal with their struggles.

“We’re all unique humans and we all have different ways of dealing with things,” Urenda said. “Some are more healthy than others. The healthier coping mechanisms are talking to others and somehow processing it verbally and getting it out of your system.”

Talking to others and reaching out for help can be difficult, but there are countless people available to talk to students in need. Sharing information with counselors, therapists, friends, family, teachers, or any other trusted adult can make all the difference.

“When people don’t want to talk about things that have impacted their life or have been traumatic, that’s where people start trying to hide their emotions, cover them up, or numb out,” Urenda said.

Students that may have a friend who has come to them regarding a struggle with depression or potentially dangerous issue they’ve been dealing with are encouraged to speak out.

“Don’t take that on yourself,” Urenda said. “That is such a big secret, and it’s not a good secret to keep. Being a good friend and listening to them is very helpful, but also telling a trusted adult or going with them to tell someone is very beneficial as well.”

Above all, it’s important to recognize that no student is alone. There are numerous resources available to any individual in need, and reaching out to adults is a necessary step towards a lasting recovery.

“The big thing is asking for help,” Urenda said. “It’s okay to ask for help because we all need help at times. It’s not a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength.”

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