Staff Editorial: Depression, suicide awareness not taken seriously enough by high school students

Staff Editorial: Depression, suicide awareness not taken seriously enough by high school students

Cartoon by Christine Rice.

Because our society has romanticized the idea of depression, many of us fail to understand how severe the illness actually is.

Many try to offer advice to those with depression, especially via social media.

After the recent Olathe Northwest suicides, social media was filled with posts and tweets insinuating that ridding yourself of depression is as easy as willing yourself to be happy.

You wouldn’t hear someone suggesting a similar simple cure to a cancer patient or someone with schizophrenia — “Oh, you don’t need help, just do something you love to do.”

Like other illnesses, depression is something that can and needs to be treated.

It is so important to understand how crucial it is to get someone help. It truly is a matter of life and death.

Yes, we live in a nice area, but we also live in an area with extremely high expectations, anonymous social media accounts and exclusive cliqués.

If you know of someone who is experiencing depression or suicidal thoughts, do something, and, if you can’t, tell someone who can immediately.

Do not brush it off.

Don’t complain about the school shoving suicide prevention down everyone’s throat because with the constantly increasing rate of suicides, everyone needs to be aware of the warning signs and what to do when they emerge.

We don’t need another dead student for us to respect one another.

Just weeks after the suicides of the two Olathe Northwest students, everything seemingly returned to normal.

Twitter was full of its usual insults and subtweets.

The boy you went out of your way to say hi to in light of the tragedy is suddenly invisible again.

It’s hard to constantly be loving and positive, but it’s even harder to imagine your words and actions could cause someone to end his or her own life.

The least you can do is speak to others as though your words will be the last they hear.

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