Crisis Text Line provides free mental health support through back and forth texting conversations with a trained counselor. Anyone can use the service by texting “HOME” to 741741.
Many users reported that texting made crisis support more accessible and comfortable for them, particularly in situations where it might be difficult or unsafe to make a phone call.
What is the Crisis Text Line?
Crisis Text Line is a free, 24/7 text-based support network. Anyone can use the service by texting HELP to 741741 at any time, and they will be connected with a trained crisis counselor.
The volunteers who answer these texts undergo rigorous training, which includes 34 hours of education on reflective listening and deescalating skills. They are also mentored by full-time supervisors with degrees in counseling, social work or human services.
Regardless of their background, each volunteer is taught to empathize with texters and to ask the right questions to help them find solutions. For example, if a texter is struggling with suicidal thoughts or feeling overwhelmed, counselors will encourage them to take a deep breath and tell them they are here for them. They can talk about anything. This could include job stress, abusive relationships or a difficult conversation with their parent. Messages can even be about a family member who is sick or a friend who’s been murdered.
Who can use the Crisis Text Line?
A crisis text line is for anyone in need of support. It’s free, anonymous and available 24/7. You can also contact a counselor over the phone. But texting is preferred because it’s quicker and easier.
You can text STEVE at 741741 to connect with a trained crisis counselor. Then the counselor will ask you questions and give you resources, if needed. All conversations are confidential and private, but you can share as much or as little as you want.
The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) has partnered with Crisis Text Line to encourage student mental, emotional and physical wellness. The organization offers free, 24/7 high-quality, text-based mental health and crisis support in English and Spanish through a community of trained volunteers. This solution aligns with the 2021-2025 NFHS Strategic Plan and Board of Directors Priorities.
How can I contact the Crisis Text Line?
In a crisis, text “GOT5U” or “GOT5C” to 741741 and a trained Crisis Counselor will respond. You can also reach them by calling 1-800-273-8255. You can talk to them about anything, and you can text or call at any time, day or night.
They are there to help you de-escalate and connect to resources for support locally. In less than 1% of crises, they will alert emergency services to your situation. They will also work with you to create a safety plan if needed.
Crisis Text Line is free, though standard messaging rates apply. The NFHS has partnered with Crisis Text Line to encourage the use of this national resource among high school students.
Crisis counselors are volunteers who donate their time to text and call those in need. Volunteers can select shifts that fit into their busy schedules. This flexibility allows them to make a significant impact, while still maintaining the ability to balance their work, family, and volunteer commitments.
Where can I find the Crisis Text Line?
The Crisis Text Line can be reached at any time by individuals in need of support. Individuals can text HELP to 741741 from anywhere in the US to connect with a trained Crisis Counselor who will listen without judgement and provide resources for help locally. Individuals may also access the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling 1-800-273-8255 or visiting their website.
The NFHS and Crisis Text Line are proud to announce a new partnership, leveraging Crisis Text Line’s national network of volunteers to encourage high school students to seek mental health support when needed. This is an exciting addition to NFHS’ ongoing efforts in support of student mental, emotional and physical wellness as identified in the 2021-2025 NFHS Strategic Plan and Board of Directors Priorities.
Volunteer Crisis Counselors can donate their time to Crisis Text Line from anywhere in the country, allowing them to work around their busy lives and commitments. All texting to the service is free and does not count against data usage on your mobile phone bill.