Here are some myths about suicide:
No one can stop a suicide if a person is committed.Those who talk about suicide don’t do it.Confronting a person considering suicide will only make them angry and increase the risk of action.These and many other fallacies were discussed Tuesday by 10 members of the Fort Lewis College administration and faculty as they conducted suicide-prevention training.
The goal is to have all of the administration, faculty and staff trained in QPR – question, persuade and refer.
QPR, a method of training people about how to help someone who might be considering suicide, was developed by Dr. Paul Quinnett, who came up with the program with the assistance of Spokane Mental Health over a three-year period.
“The idea is: Once armed with knowledge and information, you are prepared and know how to deal with this. We interact with students on a daily basis, and we don’t know when this training will be needed, but you should be prepared,” said Meghan Wrona, assistant professor of psychology, who was one of three trainers leading the workshop.
About 10 members of the faculty and administration attended Tuesday’s workshop held in the student Senate Chamber of the Student Union.
“We’re not training you to be a therapist, but we want you to be able to open the dialogue and recognize when someone is struggling. We can offer hope and support for a student or someone you might not even know. You want to be prepared to help them get the resources they need,” Wrona said.
Wrona noted FLC is not immune to problems of suicide.
According to a survey in spring of 2018, 52% of FLC students felt depressed at some point, 68% felt overwhelmed with anxiety and 3% had at one point attempted suicide – all rates higher than the national average.