Self-Organizing Comunity after Anonymous Suicidal Post on Yik Yak

Yik Yak is a popular anonymous social media app on many college campuses, University of Michigan included. A few days ago, someone posted a suicide note, saying his or her last day would be this April 30th. When the user declined to meet with supportive students, other Yik Yak users met in a central location to show support for this user and others facing suicidal thoughts.

One student, said the gathering and other programs through the university are opportunities to bring the conversation to light.

People don’t feel comfortable admitting ‘I have depression’ or ‘I have suicidal thoughts’ because of all the stigma, but hopefully these types of things will help take that away. You need to talk about it otherwise it’s not going to get better.

A user claiming to have posted the original note thanked the group for gathering and all the users who posted words of support. He or she later stated that all the support encouraged him or her to keep living.

Social media is shifting the stigma around mental illness and seems to be bringing it to the forefront. There, we can choose to gather, offer encouraging support, and hopefully convince people contemplating suicide that it's worth sticking around.


Posted on April 27, 2015 .