Suicide Prevention

Suicide is best conceptualized as something people consider when their pain exceeds their resources to cope with the pain.

If you or someone you know is thinking about committing suicide see our Crisis page immediately.

If you are personally feeling distressed or are having thoughts of suicide, help is available. If someone you know is in crisis, there are specific actions you can take to help your friend through this difficult time.


Counseling Center

The Counseling Center can provide a variety of services for students who may be feeling hopeless or thinking about suicide. We can also assist you if you are concerned about someone you know. There are many treatment options available on and off campus. Contact the Counseling Center at 410-704-2512 for an initial appointment to help determine what type of services best fit your needs.

Off-Campus services

Crisis Lines

Sometimes a helpful listening ear is enough to help you get through to the next time the Counseling Center is open. In this case we recommend you call one of the following local resources:

  • When the Counseling Center is closed, students in crisis who need immediate support can call the Center after-hours, during evenings and weekends. Students who call us after-hours will be connected to speak with a mental health professional by phone through ProtoCall.
    Phone: 410-704-2512
  • Grassroots Crisis Intervention Telephone Hotline: A telephone counseling that uses volunteer and peer counselors, funded by Baltimore County 
    Phone: 410-531-6677
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: A 24-hour, toll-free suicide prevention service available to anyone in suicidal crisis 
    Phone: 800-273-TALK (8255)

If you use any of the above services, we urge you to call us at the Counseling Center 410-704-2512 the next time we are open, so that we can follow-up with you and assist you further.

General Information

According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention 80% of all those individuals that attempt suicide have a mental illness most often depression. Depression is characterized by an intense sadness that that may or may not be explained by environmental causes. This intense sadness can lead people to withdraw from friends and family and feel embarrassed about their behavior. However, it is important to remember that depression is treatable.

Warning Signs

  • Someone threatening to hurt or kill themselves, or talking about wanting to hurt/kill their self
  • Someone looking for ways to hurt or kill themselves by seeking access to firearms, available pills, or other means
  • Someone talking or writing about death, dying, or suicide; when these actions are out of the ordinary for the person

There are a number of warning signs that may indicate that someone is at immediate risk for committing suicide. If you or someone you know is presenting with any of these warning signs, contact 9-1-1 or seek help from a mental health professional immediately.

Risk Factors

Risk factors include situations that may increase the likelihood of suicidal thoughts or attempts. Below are some common risk factors:

  • Untreated or under-treated mental illness
  • Alcohol and substance abuse
  • History of past suicide attempts
  • Isolation or lack of social support
  • Financial or social loss
  • Access to lethal means
  • Media that normalizes or glamorizes suicide
  • Hopelessness
  • Rage, uncontrolled anger, seeking revenge
  • Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without thinking
  • Feeling trapped – like there is no way out
  • Withdrawing from friends, family, and society
  • Anxiety, agitation, unable to sleep or sleeping all the time
  • Dramatic mood changes

Protective Factors

Protective factors are situations that may decrease the likelihood of suicidal thoughts or attempts. Below are some common protective factors:

  • Strong social support network
  • Access to effective treatments
  • Restricted access to lethal means
  • Good problems solving and conflict-resolution skills
  • Good ability to identify and regulate emotions
  • Positive beliefs about the future and life in general
  • Varied and effective coping strategies in dealing with stress
  • Cultural and religious beliefs discouraging suicide

More Information & Resources

  • A Friend Asks

A Friend Asks is a free smart-phone app that helps provide the information, tools and resources to help a friend (or yourself) who may be struggling with thoughts of suicide. Education is the key to prevention and with information like this as close as your smartphone, you could help save a life!

  • Operation Reach Out

Operation Reach Out is part of MCA-D’s effort to provide timely and effective support and guidance for military families. It's designed to:

  • Encourage people to reach out for help when they are having suicidal thoughts.
  • Help those who are concerned about family members, spouses, or fellow service members who may be suicidal.
  • Provide a personal contact help center.
  • Provide activities to help people who are depressed stay connected to others

Note: This app contains many videos segments and may take up extra memory and time to download. Video must be downloaded while connected by wifi.