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SUICIDE >Warning Signs from Chippewa Valley Crisis Team
March 25, 2013
Chippewa Mail-out to Parents
Message from the School Districts Crisis Team
 
Dear Parents and Guardians,
 
By now you have probably heard the tragic news of an 8th grade student at Davidson Middle School in Southgate Michigan who recently died by suicide at school. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of this student in their time of sorrow.
 
Suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death among young people, ages 15 to 24 years, and suicide is increasing in middle school age children. At times like this, it is important for all of us, parents and school staff, to review the signs of the potential for suicide in middle and high school students.
 
Therefore, we would like to provide you with some important information from our Chippewa Valley Schools District Crisis Team.
 
WARNING SIGNS, DIRECT OR INDIRECT, ABOUT THE POTENTIAL FOR SUICIDE SHOULD NEVER BE IGNORED.
If you have questions or concerns about your child, contact his/her school counselor or school social worker. The Macomb County Crisis Center confidential telephone line (586) 307-9100 is an additional resource and is available 24 hours a day.
 
Signs of the Potential for Suicide during the Middle and High School Years Verbal (Any verbal communication needs to be taken very seriously.)
1) Direct (I'm going to kill myself)
2) I ndirect (I won't be around much longer, You'll be sorry when I'm gone, I can't go on)
3) Written or artistic expressions about death or suicide
 
Behavioral
1) Eating Problems (Eating too much or too little)
2) Sleeping Problems (Sleeping too much or too little)
3) Decrease in Self-care (messier appearance)
4) Social (Less participation in activities, dropping out of extra-curricular activities, sports, quitting job)
5) Spending less time with friends or family (Isolating, staying in room more)
6) Decreased School Performance (Increased absences, failing grades, frequent daydreaming or inability to concentrate)
7) Getting Things in Order (Giving things away, apologizing for old arguments, paying debts)
8) Obtaining a Means for Suicide (collecting pills, buying a gun, razor, rope, etc.)
9) Increased Risk-Taking Behavior (Driving at excessive speeds, self-injury, substance abuse including use of drugs and/or alcohol to cope with life problems)
 
Emotional
1) Negative view of the world (Depression, feelings of hopelessness and powerlessness)
2) Negative view of self (Self-criticism, feelings of guilt)
3) Emotional Behavior (Sad appearance, crying easily or for no apparent reason, flat facial expression, becoming more aggressive than usual, greater irritability and intolerance)
4) Sudden improvement in mood after a period of depression or serious problems
 
Situational Issues
1) Health Complaints (Frequent headaches, stomachaches, fatigue, loss of energy)
2) Loss of Control Over Life Situation (victim of violence, unwanted pregnancy, history of abuse in family, humiliating experience)
3) Recent Loss (Death of family member or friend, break up of a relationship with a boy/girlfriend, parental divorce, rejection on athletic team)
4) Sexual orientation issues
5) Family history of suicide or exposure to the suicidal behavior of others
6) Previous suicide attempts
 
Additional information for parents on suicide is available at www.sptsusa.org/parents.
 
Parents keep the lines of communication open with your children and let them know you are there to support them.
 
Thank you.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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