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Hastings student dies by suicide - Published Oct. 29, 2012

A Hastings student died by suicide this weekend.

Additional counselors are at Hastings High School this week to assist students and faculty members.


Symptoms of serious depression are listed on the Suicide Awareness Voices of Education website. In adolescents, they include:

Depressive illnesses/anxiety may be disguised as, or presented as, eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia, drug/alcohol abuse, sexual promiscuity, risk-taking behavior such as reckless driving, unprotected sex, carelessness when walking across busy streets, on bridges or cliffs. There may be social isolation, running away, constant disobedience, getting into trouble with the law, physical or sexual assaults against others, obnoxious behavior, failure to care about appearance/hygiene, no sense of self or of values/morals, difficulty cultivating relationships, inability to establish/stick with occupational/educational goals.

Physical symptoms such as dizziness, headaches, stomachaches, neck aches, arms or legs hurt due to muscle tension, digestive disorders. (ruling out other medical causes)

Persistent unhappiness, negativity, irritability.

Uncontrollable anger or outbursts of rage.

Overly self-critical, unwarranted guilt, low self-esteem.

Inability to concentrate, think straight, remember, or make decisions, possibly resulting in refusal to study in school or an inability (due to depression or attention deficit disorder) to do schoolwork.

Slowed or hesitant speech or body movements, or restlessness (anxiety).

Loss of interest in once pleasurable activities.

Low energy, chronic fatigue, sluggishness.

Change in appetite, noticeable weight loss or weight gain, or abnormal eating patterns.

Chronic worry, excessive fear.

Preoccupation with death themes in literature, music, drawings, speaking of death repeatedly, fascination with guns/knives.

Suicidal thoughts, plans, or attempts.

Warning signs of suicide

SAVE lists these as warning signs of suicide. The risk is greater if a behavior is new or has increased and if it seems related to a painful event, loss or change.

Talking about wanting to die or to kill oneself.

Looking for a way to kill oneself, such as searching online or buying a gun.

Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.

Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.

Talking about being a burden to others.

Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs.

Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.

Sleeping too little or too much.

Withdrawn or feeling isolated.

Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge.

Displaying extreme mood swings.

Additional Warning Signs of Suicide

Preoccupation with death.

Suddenly happier, calmer.

Loss of interest in things one cares about.

Visiting or calling people to say goodbye.

Making arrangements; setting one's affairs in order.

Giving things away, such as prized possessions.


Several resources are available for anyone having a mental health crisis.

Among them is the the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

A Twin Cities-based resource, Suicide Awareness Voices of Education, has a wealth of materials for anyone with questions about suicide. Their website can be found at

Dakota County has a mental health crisis team, too. The county's 24-hour phone line can be reached at 952-891-7171.

The county includes this information on its website:

If a person is an immediate danger to self or others, call 911.

The Dakota County Crisis Response Unit (CRU) provides 24-hour phone and face-to-face crisis intervention and consultation.

CRU staff is able to hospitalize clients needing that level of care or utilize crisis beds available at a contracted residential treatment provider.

Other crisis resources:

Crisis Connection (24-hour hotline for mental health)


National Hope Hotline for Youth Crisis and Suicide

800-S U I C I D E (800-784-2433).