Let’s talk about mental health


A flyer that invites you Centennial students, parents, and faculty to come to a night of open discussion on depression and suicide.

Marjorie Hsu and Sydney Hoose

Centennial will host a Mental Health night on Feb. 25, 6:30-8:00 p.m. It’s part of the event “You Matter” with guest speaker John Trautwein, who is one of the founders of the Will to Live Foundation. The event is geared to help promote awareness about mental illness and suicide, and how people can help combat it.

Thought it’s not always noticeable, your loved ones, acquaintances, and even strangers may be struggling with a mental illness. According to a recent story on CNN, “Half of children with a mental health condition in the United States go without treatment, according to a study published Monday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.”  Help can be found at Centennial counseling, a trusted friend or adult. In addition, there are online resources such as the Will to Live Foundation, National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and more.

Trautwein founded the organization in memory of his son, Will, who killed himself at the age of 15. The organization’s mission is: “We are dedicated to preventing teen suicide by improving the lives and the ‘Will To Live’ of teenagers everywhere through education about mental health and encouraging them to recognize the love and hope that exists in each other.

Mental health issues are a serious matter. Many students in high school have mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, DID (dissociative identity disorder), and others.

Society tends to shame and put down people who have mental disorders, but they must realize that it is not the person’s fault. “Staying positive” is easier said than done. There is nothing wrong with having a mental illness, it simply means that a person might have trouble staying calm or maintaining an elevated mood.

There are several things that can cause mental illness. Sometimes it is genetic, other times it is caused by trauma or abuse. Before one can judge another person for having a mental illness, they must know what that person is going through. If a friend seems upset more than usual, and they seem more upset than the average person, please reach out to them.

Ask, “how are you feeling?” Just knowing that you care can make their day a whole lot better. Leaving someone alone in pain is not the wisest thing to do. A person you care about may be having suicidal thoughts, they might feel lonely and unloved. Even if someone says “I’m fine,” or pushes you away, just be there to listen to and comfort them.