It was said that at least four students have attempted suicide at UCSB within the last quarter (“Suicide Attempts Concern Officials,” Daily Nexus, Feb. 26). One of those four students happens to be a friend of mine. Because of her attempted suicide, she was “suspended indefinitely.” Yeah, kicked out. Oops… did the UCSB officials forget to mention that?
This brilliant young woman (a Regents Scholar, in fact) is facing the world with a severe case of bipolar disorder. Upon her attempted suicide, the administration apparently found her to be a liability and decided that the best option was to expel her. I have never heard of such blatant discrimination by UCSB. Bipolar disorder is a mental disability. How is this disability different from the others here? Why is it that some students are accommodated while others get expelled upon discovery of their disability? The hypocrisy is disgusting.
Instead of helping a student in need, they kick her out, tell her roommates that she’s dangerous and put a nice black mark on her record. And the Student Mental Health Committee has the gall to ask for more money for preventative measures? They won’t even take care of the existing issue.
As I see it, the administration isn’t interested in helping the existing issue. They’re just trying to get rid of it. Preventing another “Virginia Tech,” someone might say. Shame our very own Counseling Services doesn’t think to explain that these injustices are what cause horrors like that of Virginia Tech.
Finally taken seriously by her doctors, my friend is getting the help she needs. Unfortunately, she will probably never return to UCSB. I am highly disappointed at how poorly this situation was handled, and I can only hope that future “improvements” in aiding our troubled students will include communication, compassion and hopefully a little bit of tact.
That is terrible. The University should have helped her instead of kicking her out. Imagine you have a student in the brink of suicide, who feels his/her life is worthless…and to add to their troubles, you kick them out of school? Are you f-ing kidding me? What more motivation would someone need to fully commit the act?
I am sorry to hear about your friend. Do you know if she threatened to harm other students? That is the only reason I can understand her getting expelled.
That must have been tough…Seeing your friend in crisis like that. The thing is…if UCSB Counseling Services or other mental health activists were to get funding for preventative measures, maybe your friend would have known the 24/7 counseling number and her attempt could have been avoided. The absolutely last thing that UCSB wants to do is have a student leave, but if the situation is severe enough administration does WHAT IS BEST FOR THE STUDENT. It is not the standard policy of UCSB to immediately suspend or expel a student because of a mental health "disability". How feasible is it… Read more »
The bigger pictureDid you know that 1 out of 10 college students have made a suicide plan? Did you know that 4 out of 5 people are affected directly or indirectly by mental health issues? Did you know that the Counseling Center now offers 8 hours of crisis appointments everyday (in addition to normal appointment hours)….and they are ALWAYS filled by students who walk into the counseling center in need of an emergency appointment? Did you know that mental health disabilities are going to be the most prevalent health issue by the year 2020? I understand that you are worried… Read more »
Understanding What You’re PresentedI think it is important to note that Ms. Weaver’s letter did not require knowledge of suicide rates and statistics, the under-funding of counseling services, nor pointless trivia about the year 2020. Ms. Weaver, as those who actually read the article would notice, instead argued against the hypocrisy and blatant discrimination of the school ADMINISTRATION, whether or not the aforementioned administration was (likely) advised by counseling services. I agree that students should not be scared off by this article and should seek help if they find themselves in need of it. I also believe that providing as… Read more »
I appreciate your comments,
I appreciate your comments,
But all I’m trying to say is that the people who work ON THEIR WEEKENDS talking to families and friends of those who have attempted suicide are trying to do whats best for the student. Most cases of attempted suicide don’t lead to expulsion/suspension, etc. unless the student breaks a UCSB Code of Conduct, which is handled by judicial affairs. I think your battle is with them, friend. Please know the facts before disrespecting people who only have your best interest at heart.
@ InterestedPartyI’m glad you’re so interested, InterestedParty. The girl Crystal referred to in this article was my roommate. There was no such discrimination present in her case. She was suspended from school because she did not voluntarily leave. She was asked to voluntarily leave because her "humbling devastating" illness manifested in a clear and present danger not only to her life, but to at least 5 other people. There is no conspiracy. UCSB did its job, protecting her life, my life, and the lives of my other roommates. My former roommate is now able to receive the care she needed… Read more »
In Response To Your ThoughtsThank you all for your comments. They have been quite interesting, and excellent food for thought. Precisely what an opinion article is all about, don’t you agree? To those who are upset and feel that I am pushing students away from UCSB’s mental health services, I assure you this was not my intention. The people in Counseling services are, I’m sure, quite kind and dedicated people who are just trying to do the right thing. They DO put in long hours dealing with extremely difficult situations, and I am so grateful that they are there for… Read more »
An attempt at suicide will not lead to suspension/expulsion. Directly endangering the lives of others, however, is a different story, especially if you refuse to take time off to receive the help that you need.
In response to Ms. Weaver…How can you be so sure that your friend is really "doing amazingly well," and that she is "up and on her feet?" Are you a professional? Are you capable of assessing a mentally ill individual’s progress in recovering from a manic break down and an attempt at taking his/her own life? Yeah, didn’t think so. Those who have PhDs in Psychology–those who have seen situations like the one you wrote about and patients much like your "friend" say that a mental illness such as bipolar disorder can take extended amounts of time to recover from.… Read more »
I understand that there are different viewpoints and I appreciate that we have gotten to hear a couple of them. The only thing I don’t understand is why we keep going back to linking attempting suicide with being expelled/suspended. These cases are obviously looked at individually but now that her roommate has posted what happened, it’s clear that she was "indefinitely suspended" because a Code of Conduct was broken by endangering another students life. It has nothing to do with the actual attempt. I just really don’t want people to think that because they attempt suicide they will automatically be… Read more »
WowThis is such a terrible opinion article to have posted. You are basically warning mentally ill students that they can potentially be kicked out of school if they say something. I was diagnosed my sophomore year at the UCSB health center with bipolar disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and ADD. I have tried to commit suicide countless of times and 1 time about a year ago, I was taken to the psychiatric unit at Cottage Hospital by the UCSB ambulance. At this time, too, I was seeing a psychiatrist at the UCSB health center and he knew everything that was going… Read more »