It is a tough subject to talk about. It can happen anywhere so as peers, parents and educators, we need to be ever mindful. Don’t wait until it is too late. Be aware of the signs.
- a new family formation (e.g., step-parents and step-siblings)
- moving to a different community
- physical or sexual abuse
- emotional neglect
- exposure to domestic violence
- alcoholism in the home
- substance abuse
- cyberbullying (use of social media, like facebook, twitter etc.)
- Suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people, resulting in about 4,400 deaths per year, according to the CDC. For every suicide among young people, there are at least 100 suicide attempts. Over 14 percent of high school students have considered suicide, and almost 7 percent have attempted it.
- Bully victims are between 2 to 9 times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims, according to studies by Yale University
- A study in Britain found that at least half of suicides among young people are related to bullying
- 10 to 14 year old girls may be at even higher risk for suicide, according to the study above
- According to statistics reported by ABC News, nearly 30 percent of students are either bullies or victims of bullying, and 160,000 kids stay home from school every day because of fear of bullying.
- Cyberbullying messages and images can be posted anonymously and distributed quickly to a very wide audience. It can be difficult and sometimes impossible to trace the source.
Traip Academy Principal Eric Waddell is worried. According to the biennial Maine Integrated Youth Health Survey, more than one-third of Traip Academy students reported feeling depressed, and more than 20 percent said they have considered suicide.
Those numbers are higher than the statewide average of all Maine high school students, as are the numbers for drinking, smoking marijuana and taking prescription drugs.
The results of the anonymous survey were recently released by the state, although students took the survey in February 2013. The state gathers this information every two years.