All of a sudden newspapers are full of reports about children, mostly teens and young adults taking their own lives. I am not sure whether this was a regular occurance earlier and it is only now this is getting prominence, or this is a new problem which we as a society are facing.
The reasons for commiting suicide vary from the predictable to the bizzare. One has heard of teens taking their lives due to failure in exams, or rejection in love but suicide on grounds of loneliness, lack of preparation for exams, not being permitted to learn dancing...are certainly new and confounding. One suicide case certainly bordered on the bizzare. The child wanted to meet and be close to her deceased father.
Every loss of a young life is tragic and shatters the family involved. Life moves on and the family would eventually get on with their lives and time the great healer will fill these wounds. The question here is why does this happen?
Let me try and understand our existing circumstances and put things in perspective. I cannot claim deep understanding of teen affairs but I base my understanding on my observations of my daughters and their friends. I would ike to believe that this would be as contemporary as it gets.
I would believe that parents have a critical role to play. Grand-parents, cousins, uncles/ aunts and immediate circle of relatives form an important protective and supportive circle around. Friends are an important social support system. Apart from these teachers do also play an important role.
One clear advantage of having an active social network of relatives and friends is the emotional support that one can draw from them. A sharp rebuke or a scolding from a teacher is eased by parents or friends. Hurt after a fight with a sibling can be balmed by a friend or relative and so on. The funny part is we draw on this well of comfort / support all the time but never realise it.
A teen yet to fully develop emotional balance gets the comfort and strength to face many such reverses of life. This "on-demand" availability of the "soft touch" so to say has helped many a teen (including us back then) in handling the various pains of growing up.
It is time we acknowledge that many children in our society do not have an adequate support system around them. This may be a result of many factors but modern life is certainly a big contributor. Let me try and present gaps that have developed in our lives and the dangers they pose.
I would like my blogger friends ti share their their thoughts on what they think about this new problem surfacing in our lives.