|Photo via New York Post|
College is stressful. I've been reminded of that during this third week of grad school as many of my peers are already in panic mode. It's not just the classes that are tough when you're a college student, but it's the classes along with the involvements, along with making a really unique life transition.
I was heartbroken to read about 19-year-old University of Pennsylvania track star Madison Holleran's recent death by suicide. Her family believes she jumped to her death because of the stress of grades and depression issues. You can read the entire article here.
I talk about mental health in my book because it's such a crucial part of your college experience. College is supposed to be an enjoyable experience. The stress should never overwhelm you to the point that you don't see any way out besides taking your own life. I didn't get perfect grades in college and I can attest that not having perfect grades or the perfect resume will not keep you from achieving your dreams.
We often discuss being super stressed or depressed as something casual, but often times it isn't. I got a reality check during college when I realized that there is more to life than grades or rankings. No one is perfect, so I stopped trying to be. Instead, I vowed to do my best in everything that I do and give myself breaks when I need them. Dealing with the stress of college takes effort and planning, but it's worth it. Your health is worth it. And you're worth it.
If college or life has become too stressful for you, seek help. Every college campus should offer counseling, and if they don't there are hotlines and people willing to help you.
Maddy was just one of many college students in America who were battling so much that ending their life seemed like the only option. I hope that college suicides will become less and less common, and that students will seek help when they need it.
And I hope Maddy will rest in peace.