Sajini Chandrasekera

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A 13-year-old K.D. Ishara Madhushani from Kirulapone to take the most drastic measure in her young life -- that of committing suicide. Ishara who walked home from school late that day with her younger sister, had her lunch as usual, says father K.D.R. Prasad Kumara, while mother W. Anoma Perera adds that soon after as was her routine she went into her room. “She wraps a saree around herself, sits her dolls in a row, takes a kotta (cane) and teaches them, walking up and down,” says Anoma. When the family realized that she was in the room for a long time, found the door locked and peeped in through a window, it was too late. Ishara was dead by the time she was taken to hospital and when the we visited their home on Thursday, relatives and friends had gone back to their own homes and the family had given the heel dane in her memory to the temple nearby.
Ishara died on September 17, taking the toll of “teenage suicides” one notch higher. Ironically, though the Sunday Times contacted many authorities to check how many teenagers had committed suicide during the past three months, not one had the vital statistics at hand. -  Sunday Times

Why would teens with their whole lives ahead of them decide to kill themselves? It's a question that haunts parents, friends, and even strangers when a teenager commits suicide.

As you grew into your adulthood, you slowly learned that you had control of most things that happened in your life. Through experience and trial-and-error, you gained knowledge and the tools necessary to solve your problems the best that you could. For teenagers, sometimes their overwhelming hopelessness is enough to cause them to take their own lives. Most teens who survive suicide attempts say that they tried to kill themselves because they were trying to escape a situation that seemed impossible to deal with, or they were trying to escape overwhelming feelings like rejection, guilt, anger, or sadness. It can be hard to remember how it felt to be a teen, caught in that gray area between childhood and adulthood. Sure, it's a time of tremendous possibility but it also can be a period of stress and worry. There's pressure to fit in socially, to perform academically, and to act responsibly.Adolescence is also a time of sexual identity and relationships and a need for independence that often conflicts with the rules and expectations set by others.

The kinds of problems that teenagers face may be different from those of adults, but the problems are very real to the teens that are facing them. . Teens are given more freedom which means more responsibility that they are sometimes not ready to handle. If a teen is facing a problem and has nobody to talk to, they may feel neglected, unwanted, and alone. If a teen continues to encounter their problems alone, they may become overwhelmed and think that suicide is the only way out. Sometimes following a stressful life event, such as problems at school, a breakup with a boyfriend or girlfriend, the death of a loved one, a divorce, or a major family conflict also can lead them for these kind of acts.Teens may commit suicide for other reasons as well. Maybe a teen has known a family member or friend who has committed suicide, or has been influenced by the media that suicide is a common or normal approach to solving seemingly impossible problems . For teens that do not plan their suicide, the end of their life may be a result of something as simple as the means (a gun or pills) being present at the exact moment of their desperation.

Factors that increase the risk of suicide among teens include:
a psychological disorder, especially depression, bipolar disorder, and alcohol and drug
feelings of distress, irritability, or agitation
feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness that often accompany depression
a previous suicide attempt
a family history of depression or suicide
emotional, physical, or sexual abuse
lack of a support network, poor relationships with parents or peers, and feelings of social isolation
dealing with bisexuality or homosexuality in an unsupportive family or community or hostile school environment
* Breakup of a love affair or  a loss of a dear freind

Teens who are thinking about suicide might:
We as parents carry this responsibility on our shoulders. Our kids are not enjoying their childhood these days and education has become a huge stress on them and the competition on one another on a rat race to prove your self best. Electronic media is playing a huge part in ruining these young lives. Some teens are bullies through cyber that make them take their lives as they can't face the humiliation. Most parents are busy with their own work schedules that they rarely have time for their teen son/daughter and these kids get involved with other kids who are also lonely as them and create a  negative thoughts among them which lead them to suicide.

Whatever the reason may be for a teen taking his life, it is never an acceptable one. Many teen suicides could have been prevented if the lines of communication were open between a teen and someone who cared about them. If you suspect that your teen is depressed or contemplating suicide, you must treat their feelings of desperation with the utmost respect. There are many myths about suicide. The popular belief that ‘those that talk about it don't do it’ is dangerously wrong. Such an episode must always be taken seriously. It is also dangerous to dismiss a non-fatal suicide attempt as ‘attention-seeking’. Many people who lose their lives to suicide have attempted suicide previously.Dealing with teenagers can be very difficult at the best of times. If you are aware of a young person who seems constantly unhappy or bad tempered, don't be afraid to ask them about how they are feeling. Often just knowing that someone cares is enough to let them unburden their problems, and may prevent tragedy.


posted by Sajini Lakshika Chandrasekera @ 9:42 AM,


At September 26, 2012 at 10:15 AM, Anonymous Power Angel said...

A topic which is becoming so popular in this country. Kids are taking their lives so easy. Some one has to take blame on this and as adults we must stop these things happening.

At September 26, 2012 at 10:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A must read topic to every adult , not only parents. It is in deed sad that these kids who are to be bloomed tomorrow kill them selves as they dont have courage the face the problems. We have to be close to kids as this world is becoming unsafe day by day. We need to bring a awereness to teens on this topic and make them feel that suicide is done by cowards.

At September 26, 2012 at 10:35 AM, Anonymous LG said...

Good article but rather than teens it's education system that needs to be blamed. When we were kids we had a childhood , but kids nowadays is exsaausted by education and the race which starts in the age of 10 with the 5th grade examination where parents take their kids to tution at very young age. If we want to stop this we have to chage the whole education system.

At September 26, 2012 at 11:04 AM, Anonymous AMAYA DELGODA said...


At September 26, 2012 at 11:14 AM, Anonymous Krishan Perera said...

A very good post.This should be done as a awerness programe to educated these teens and also as mentioned above i also think the education is putting a heavy burden on children nowadays and also the time kids spend with their parents are also little. Those days kids spent lesiure times with parents going on trips or walking down the beach or going to the park, but today even parents are not interested to put effort to their kids except chasing money. Whole society is responsible for this, not just one party.

At September 26, 2012 at 10:36 PM, Anonymous Kausar Bilal said...

Very well said. Actually, our parenting and school institutions should be very friendly and comforting for teenage so that they never feel alone to deal with any kind of issues...
A very saddening issue...

At September 27, 2012 at 3:43 PM, Blogger Sajini Chandrasekera said...

Thank you all for the comments posted regarding this article. I agree with all of you and there are so many things and people if we are to point our finger. It is true that this society is rapidly changing and the good values are not there any more. Children have lost their childhood to the heavy burden of education and the competition. Every teen is in a rat race and the education system it self don't provide them time to enjoy them selves in sports or any other mind relaxing activities. And also as parents we are also pushing them as we believe that our child should be a doctor, engineer or lawyer in society and rather than what they want these kids have to satisfy parents need in education.
Most parents are working and that gives a very little time for kids to be with them and these kids feel lonely. They dont have a parent to share their fears and happiness and eventually they seek other people's or rather friends to help and guide them and this lead into many unwanted issues. Media is also playing part in this creating competition in young minds with the kids reality shows.
Most teens nowadays can't cope the stress they burden with and mostly it's due to the heavy work load the school gives them. Kids loose their temper much quicker than a average person and most teens are alone where they are very depressed.
All these are linked together as a chain and as parents what we can do is to be with them in every step of the way. They need parents and teachers to support them guide them and if parents and teachers handle these situations in a way which a teen cannot take or make them threaten they will take unwise decisions. I think to cope a teen is to listen to him as a friend and guide him...
with all efforts from all members of this society we will be able to help these teens to realize the value of life and that to suicide is a thing done by people who are afraid to live life.


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