I know this is not an uplifting subject, but I can’t help but notice the rise in teens and pre-teens committing suicide due to bullying and cyber bullying. Recently, Rebecca Ann Sedwick, a 12-year-old girl, took her own life due to cyber bullying. It’s extremely sad that these children feel like the only relief from their pain is death.
The pre-teen and teenage years are so emotional and out-of-control. Their bodies and minds are going through numerous changes that can be hard to understand. And as a young person, you can feel like your peers are the be-all, end-all of your entire life. I know that they can feel as though their world is coming to an end when their peers don’t like them or bully them. As a young person, your whole life is surrounded by school, and if school sucks it can feel as though your whole life sucks. Add social media on top of it, and there is a perfect recipe for disaster. Kids can’t go home to escape bullying anymore. It’s not limited to the school building. It’s on the internet, and this is terrible. Home is no longer a refuge.
I am only 29 years old, but I don’t remember any children committing suicide over bullying when I was in school. Now when I was in high school, school shootings were becoming prevalent (but no suicides that I can recall). I remember a classmate that was reclusive. He was found with a “Bully List” that had names of other students that he wanted to kill due to bullying. Fortunately nothing happened, but I can’t recall what the principal did to reprimand him.
I just feel so sad that these children are taking their lives. Something needs to be done about cyber bullying. In no way, shape, or form am I here to blame anybody: schools, parents, etc. because I know, from an educators point of view, that you try to teach your students to respect each other, but what do you do about their time in the bathroom, hall, while waiting on for the bus, etc.? Just like parents, educators can’t be everywhere all the time, though we do try very hard. I just feel like there needs to be some form of education about this. I don’t have a teenager yet, but I pray that I will be able to convey the importance of treating others with respect. I also hope to portray the importance of loving yourself even when no one else does. I pray that she will feel so loved that she won’t resort to drastic measures like suicide or hurting someone else. I hope she understands that everyone will not like you, but this is not the end of the world. I can only pray and hope for the future. I pray also for our youth of the world. May God place His hands on them all.
What are your feelings about cyber bullying? What steps do you feel can be taken to help prevent this rise in teen suicide?