Monica Amukugo (18)
Windhoek-Across the globe, teenagers commit suicide every 100 minutes. Article 6 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) states that every child has the right to life, so what is the main cause of teenage suicide?
There are many contributing factors to young people choosing to end their lives. And many times, there are pre-existing factors, such as eating disorders, which can be caused by low self–esteem and bullying.
Eating disorders can also be encouraged by the unrealistic, computer enhanced images that mainstream media sell as the perfect body and look. The teenager, vulnerable and still finding her or his way in the world, can easily be fooled by this.
Some teens also struggle with mental health that result in them experiencing a loss of motivation, and not wanting to engage with the world as they used to. What is most important is getting the help as soon as you notice that you are feeling or acting differently.
Depression is a leading cause for teenage suicide. It is a serious condition and it upsets me when my peers say they are depressed when they’re actually just upset that they didn’t get the latest electronic device they wanted. So what is depression?
It is a serious medical illness that negatively affects the way you feel, think, and the way you do things. Symptoms include feeling sad all the time; loss of interest in things that used to make you happy; trouble sleeping; loss of energy; feeling worthless and guilty. The worst is thoughts of death and suicide.
Depression can be caused by trauma such as rape or abuse, bullying, as well as pressure from school and parents. It is very important to know that symptoms must last at least two weeks continuously. Depression is also very different from sadness and grief.
Depression is by far for me the worst mental fight anyone can experience. The grieving process is natural, and sadness is an emotion everybody will feel eventually.
If you’re considering suicide, always remember that there are people who love you dearly and don’t want to loose you. There are beautiful moments ahead, just waiting for you. So, find something that makes you happy.
Don’t dwell in the past and negative thoughts. Talk to somebody. Remind yourself of your worth. And most importantly you WILL NOT feel this way forever. Always remember that there is one in one trillion chances of having a life.
You already have one, so use that one you have to its best potential. Do whatever you want. Be whatever you want. Life is a gift, wake up every day and make the most of it.
If you’re dealing with depression, Lifeline/Childline is there to lend an ear on the Toll Free number: 116.
For more background see: