A few years ago I remember a stream of media stories about Bridgend, a town in Wales where there seemed to be an abnormal number of children committing suicide. I don’t remember being particularly aware of the issue before then but ever since it seems that the media regularly report stories about children who’ve been bullied so badly that they feel suicide is the only way out.
I’ve never been bullied and so can’t imagine how awful life is for children who feel that they have no way out. As a mum I worry about how I would handle this happening to my children. I hope I could I prevent them taking the final step, but perhaps they wouldn’t feel able to tell me how they feel. Perhaps they would think it might worry, embarrass or even anger me. Perhaps they would be too frightened to tell. I don’t know. I hope I never need to.
What I do know is that whilst children may be unable to find help to prevent them taking their lives, there’s plenty of information on the web to help them to end it. I did a quick Google search and there’s a wikipedia site featuring the top places to commit suicide, and plenty of other sites that tell you how to actually do it and give tips (no link because I’m not going to promote them).
Shy Keenan an author and prominent child abuse campaigner says her 14 year old son was “bullied to death” and used sites like this to help him do it. She’s now campaigning to ban these sites. And she’s not alone. In June Patti Boyle claimed that suicide sites had helped her son to plan his death. She called on David Cameron to ban suicide sites. If this is what it takes to reduce the number of deaths from suicides then I really hope the government will act upon it.
Even one child taking their life is too many. If there is a campaign that will help these children then join it.