Silhouette of young adults standing together in front of a sunrise facing away from the camera

It Matters that You're Here.

 

Thoughts of suicide can be scary, distressing, confusing, and lonely. If you've found this webpage because you’re thinking about ending your life, we want you to know that what you're experiencing matters and that we are grateful you are here.

You are brave and resilient for choosing to explore options for finding a way through this pain. Although it may feel like life will never get better, holding on through this difficult time and reaching out for support right now can provide you with more time for healing to happen and the chance to access care that can make a difference.  You don't have to face this pain alone. 

If you are in crisis or need to talk to someone right away, please click the red "I'm in crisis" button to learn how you can access help immediately. For a more comprehensive list of resources, please click the orange "How to Find Help" button below.

 

Red button with white text that says "I'm in crisis and need help now"

 

 

Anyone can experience thoughts of suicide when emotional pain becomes too much. You are not broken. You are not a burden. You are not worthless. You are human and you are hurting. Thoughts of suicide indicate that there is something within you needing more support, more understanding, and more time to heal.

All pain deserves care and compassion. To learn more about seeking support and to find free resources that are available to help with a variety of needs, click the orange "Help" button below. 

Thoughts of suicide are often accompanied by heavy feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, overwhelm, and isolation. It can be exhausting to live with this pain every day and we understand that you may have been carrying these emotions for a long time. It makes sense if you're feeling discouraged when everything hurts so much.

Yet despite it all, you are here right now breathing and reading these words. There is a part of you that is fighting to stay alive. Your courage is powerful and important. It matters that you are here. 

Because you are still here, there is hope. There are many people on campus who are holding onto hope for you and who believe that you are worth fighting for. Click on the blue "Hope" button below to read messages of care from our campus community.

When life becomes this heavy, it can be hard to believe that things can get better or to see a path forward. Although at times it may seem like suicide is the only option, the truth is that there are many options still available that can help you feel that life is worth living and allow you to find a reason to stay. For example:

  • People you haven't met yet;
  • Resources you can still try;
  • Conversations you haven't had;
  • Places you haven't visited;
  • Care that leaves you feeling seen, understood, and less alone;
  • Healing that allows you to experience less physical and emotional pain, a lighter heart, and a calmer mind.

After all you have been through, you deserve for your pain to be eased through safety, support, and healing.

Healing can only happen if you are here to experience it. To learn more about coping with distress and difficult emotions, click on the green "Healing" button below.

Orange square with white text that says "How to find help"

Blue square with white text that says "Messages of Hope"

Green box with white text that says "Skills for coping and healing"

 
Silhouette of many people standing together in front of a sunset, with the words "together we can find a way through" written on a white overlay
 
 

Blue box with white text that says "Suicide prevention information and training"

 

Blue box with white text that says "Printable resources"

 

Producers 

  • Ken Amlin
  • Brilynn Ferguson

Manuscript

  • Student Health, Counselling & Wellness Services
  • Ken Amlin

External Manuscript Reviewer

  • Dr. Michael Kral, Clinical-Community-Cultural Psychologist and Medical Anthropologist | Associate Professor, School of Social Work, Wayne State University | Expert in suicide and Indigenous mental health and well-being.

Lived Experience Consultants

  • To the many members of our campus community with lived experience who shared your time, expertise, and hearts with us, we express our deepest gratitude and respect for all you have overcome, all you have contributed to this video and website, and all that you bring to the world. Thank you for being here.

Campus Partners

  • Office of the President
  • Office of the Provost and Vice-President, Academic
  • Office of the Vice-President, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
  • Office of the Associate Vice-President, Student Experience
  • Student Health, Counselling and Wellness Services
  • Office of Sexual Violence Prevention, Resistance, and Support
  • Student Accessibility Services
  • Campus Community Police
  • Residence Services
  • Leddy Library
  • Turtle Island
  • Student Success and Leadership Centre
  • International Student Centre
  • Centre for English Language Development
  • Athletics and Recreational Services
  • Lancer Women's Hockey
  • Lancers Recover
  • UWindsor Pride
  • BIDE Institute
  • Muslim Chaplaincy
  • Peer Support Centre
  • Human Resources
  • Public Affairs and Communication
  • CJAM FM Studios
  • Faculty of Graduate Studies
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences
  • Faculty of Nursing
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Human Kinetics
  • Odette School of Business
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • University of Windsor Students' Alliance
  • Graduate Student Society
  • Chiroworks Rehabilitation and Wellness Centre

It Matters that You're Here is the University of Windsor's first year-round campus suicide prevention initiative, launched in October 2022. Developed by Student Health, Counselling, and Wellness Services and brought to life through various collaborations with campus partners, It Matters that You're Here aims to bring the UWindsor community together in raising awareness of suicide, sharing messages of hope, increasing knowledge of resources and supports, encouraging help-seeking, and building skills for supporting each other. Campus voices are the inspiration and foundation of this initiative.

Rooted in lived experience, clinical knowledge, and campus needs identified throughout the development and implementation of UWindsor’s Student Mental Health Strategy, It Matters that You’re Here takes a multifaceted approach to embedding suicide prevention and mental health promotion into university culture while working to advance the values and commitments of a caring, compassionate, and connected campus community.

The initiative includes:

  • A suicide prevention outreach video that features nearly 80 members of the campus community sharing messages of hope, encouraging help-seeking, and demonstrating the often-invisible pain that those who are living with thoughts of suicide experience day-to-day. The messaging of the video aims to reach those who are struggling with suicide and other difficult experiences while also modelling compassionate language that anyone can adopt when communicating with someone in need of support.
  • New online content that serves as a resource for anyone experiencing thoughts of suicide and anyone wanting to help someone who is struggling. The It Matters that You're Here website offers crisis and non-crisis resources, educational information about help-seeking, skills for self-advocacy, messages of hope and care from the campus community, strategies for coping, and resources for providing support and referral to someone who is experiencing thoughts of suicide.
  • Members of the University of Windsor community featured as Care Champions each year, offering their own reflections, encouraging help-seeking, and sharing personalized messages of hope.
  • Ongoing outreach activities through social media and in-person events
  • Regular collaborations with campus partners to advance suicide prevention work at the University of Windsor
  • New resource handouts and posters distributed across the University featuring QR codes that can be scanned with camera phones for immediate access to a collection of free and confidential mental health services, including 24/7 crisis supports.