Kids and Suicide- Why it Happens
suicidal thoughts and behaviors among youth. Bullying encompasses intentional harm both mental and physical acts. Such social exclusion and humiliation experiences during childhood and early adolescence projects later suicidal ideation, suicide attempts and suicide deaths.
– Peer and media influence: This consideration is warranted due to the exposure of how suicides are completed. Kids can find videos on social media that give immediate results that either provide instructions or support for suicide attempts.
Such platforms can cause a spike in cluster suicides, which suggest through the social learning theory that having friends/peers who have attempted or died by suicide predicts future suicide attempts in adolescence.
All members of society have to engage in best practices to address this growing epidemic. Suicide among youth can be better prevented if:
– Take suicide thoughts and ideations seriously. Never ignore or minimize someone who talks about thoughts of suicide or the desire not to live.
– If there is a plan to attempt suicide, get immediate help. Sometimes we must stop what we are doing and address the youth in need. This could mean calling emergency family contacts, obtaining emergency medical assistance, and/or taking them to the local hospital for professional help.
– Provide youth with information on supportive options such as National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255), confidential help 24-hours-a-day. You also can visit the Lifeline’s website at www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org
– Provide youth with the academic, emotional, and social skills support that is consistent and effective.
Kimberly Thomas, Ed. D. in Counseling Psychology is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in Chicago, Illinois. She specializes in Partner Violence Intervention, Substance Use Disorders, and Anger Management. Her volunteer work includes helping build faith-based community programs, workshops, and community awareness campaigns. When Dr. Thomas is not working, she enjoys being a mother, singing and attending retreats.