Suicide rates are climbing despite the effort that is being made in stemming the rate.
The latest findings from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Vital Statistics Report show that from 1999 to 2014, the suicide rate in the U.S. increased by 24 per cent.
The reasons can vary from something very simple to something profound and from a relational perspective, we are noticing a common thread. For men, the biggest rate increases were seen in the middle age group – males 45 to 64 years old. For females, the fastest growing suicide rates during the 15-year period occurred in 10 – to 14-year-old girls.
In an article written by Dr Friedman a psychiatrist, “It is felt however that psychiatric conditions are mostly to blame especially when you talk about girls before the age of puberty and for the men, coping mechanism and self-esteem. Another theory when it comes to teens: the rise in social media use may contribute to poorer mental health. Social networks are often unmonitored, leaving kids more vulnerable. At one time, children and teens developed their relationships in schools and neighbourhoods and adults could supervise”, Oquendo said.
Some parents are totally unaware of the impact social media can play on the minds of their children. The fact that a man would take the life of his family and himself has to stem from somewhere and it is commonly felt that social idealism has left many of our teens and men general unhappy when they see their own life going into a direction that is not popular.
Children and adults are not being encouraged to talk about issues anymore, we deflect our feelings on social media, there is no real outlet for a person who is hurting as a result of the trust factors around us, however, there is a way out.
One of the factors that contribute to being misinformed about suicide is that it’s not talked about enough, it is just not something that we think will happen to us or anyone related to us.
John was a quiet man, we all knew him in the community for years, he had some strange qualities but who isn’t strange at times. It rocked the community when we learnt he killed his family and then turn the gun on himself, we were all dumbfounded. It was the incident that led me to explore what goes through a person’s mind when this happens and ‘could it happen to me’ was my question.
We are reluctant in asking friends and family who we notice are acting a little strange, what is happening to you and we should waste no time in requesting help, yes, suicide on the rise, we often fear that somehow inquiring about it could incite suicide. But research shows otherwise.
Dr Madelyn Gould, a psychology professor at Columbia, and colleagues screened a group of high school students about their moods. Subjects exposed to questions about suicidal feelings or thoughts were no more likely to report thinking about suicide after the survey than those who were not asked these questions. The implication is that we should not be afraid to ask people we are concerned about if they are feeling suicidal.
Families should talk more, the days of everyone sitting around the dinner table competing with each other for something to add to the conversation are behind us, that is very sad. Let us see what we can do in our little corner in changing this narrative. Suicide preventing hotline, click here.