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Mental Health

How to Support Someone Who Struggles with Suicidal Ideation

 TW – Suicide is mentioned throughout this article

Let’s be honest here folks, talking about suicide is just not a comfortable subject for most people. For some, it is hard to know what to say when suicide gets brought up, and for others, the topic itself triggers an emotional setback. I’m here today to tell you my story and how I felt the most supported through my own struggles with suicidal thoughts. The hope with this story is that more conversations will start about the subject because despite the heaviness of the topic, talking about it could save someone’s life.

Disclaimer: I am not a mental health professional and the advice given throughout this article is based on my own experiences. 

I struggle with suicidal thoughts every single day, but you would never guess it by looking at me. To the world, I look like a high-achieving student and a well-rounded leader of the organizations I’m a part of. Yet, despite the smiles I put on for the world, there are times where I feel utterly numb inside. 

Come fall of 2020, I was Editor-in-Chief of Her Campus, a community leader (resident assistant) for Baylor, and still taking a heavy course load academically. I started feeling completely alone despite the people constantly surrounding me and with some other personal issues arising, I couldn’t see a way out. My grades started to slip and I started to isolate myself more and more until I was barely talking to any of my friends. I had reached my breaking point. 

I had reached the lowest point in my life and decided I no longer wanted to continue fighting the world. In my mind, there was no longer a point to living and that’s when I decided that the best option for me was to jump off the top of a parking garage. I would have gone through with it too, if it weren’t for certain people in my life who started to see that something wasn’t right. 

The day I almost took my life, I felt a huge rush of energy. I went to all my classes and even participated in the class discussions. I talked to friends and made sure I said my goodbyes. Then I made my way up to the parking garage roof. I sat on the ledge for a while, thinking and reflecting on my life. My eyes were closed when I heard my phone buzz. Looking down at my phone I saw that it was a text from a friend saying, “Hey, I hope you’re doing okay. I know life is pretty busy right now but let me know if there’s anything I can do to better support you. You don’t have to go through life all on your own – there are people who want to help you. Let’s catch up soon!” 

This text probably took 30 seconds to write out and send, and yet it meant so much more to me than I can even describe. In that moment, I felt seen, heard, and most importantly, cared about. This text is a huge reason why I’m still here today, and it only took 30 seconds for that person to make this impact. 

You never know what battles the people around you are fighting but it only takes a couple seconds of your time to make an impact that lasts a lifetime on them. Whether it be in person or through text, check in on those around you – you never know how it can impact their day. 


The Depression Project

National Alliance on Mental Illness

Baylor Counseling Center

Crisis Text Line

Cassandra Shin currently serves as the President of Her Campus at Baylor and is a senior majoring in Professional Writing & Rhetoric at Baylor University. She was born and raised in Austin, Texas and enjoys the constant live music around the city. When Cassandra isn't studying or in class, you can find her on spontaneous adventures with friends, performing, tending to her plants, learning new things or reading. She absolutely loves the Harry Potter books, meaningful conversations with people, spending time with Jesus, and writing.
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