After a student tried to take her own life, teacher reminds kids they’re ‘special’

There are plenty of grown adults who object to the idea of telling kids they’re special.

Tell it to Brittni Darras, a 25-year-old high school teacher in Colorado, who wrote on Facebook last week that she cried at a parent/teacher conference when a woman revealed to her that the reason her daughter has been out of class is because she attempted to take her own life.

Her daughter- a friendly, intelligent, beautiful, driven, young woman- not only planned to commit suicide, but was in the act of doing so when the police got a Safe 2 Tell report, broke in, and stopped her. She had deleted her social media accounts and left goodbye letters; she was ready to leave the world. As her mom sat across from me, we both had tears streaming down our faces. Feeling helpless, I asked if I could write my student a letter to be delivered to her at the hospital; she said her daughter would love that. My student got the letter; her mom said that her daughter cried, turned to her mom and said, “How could somebody say such nice things about me? I didn’t think anybody would miss me if I was gone.” It made me realize that I was way too close to losing another student to suicide. I spent the next 2 months writing cards to every one of my students- over 100 of them- telling each one what is special and unique about them. Suicide is growing to be more and more common, and I can’t help but to think that it’s a direct result of the pressure we put on these kids- to be successful, to fit in, to be the best in their class/sport/etc. We need to remember that each human being is unique, and that is what makes them special. Instead of trying to change it, we need to embrace it, because together, we can make a difference, and we can save lives! ‪#‎suicideawareness‬

She didn’t tell the kids why she was writing notes to each of them.


  • BReynolds33

    I think someone needs to write a note to Ms. Darras…

  • John

    Good for her! It was a bit of a labor, but what a worthwhile one. Best case scenario: it prevents an attempted suicide. Worst case: The kids know that somebody things they are important. (maybe there is a better, best case scenario – one where nobody is contemplating ending their own life. I hope that’s the case, but I suspect that it is not.)

    Win. Win.

  • Jack

    Everyone needs a reminder every now and again that they are important. You can never tell when someone needs to hear it.