On the night of October 7, 2005, the lives of Peter D’Souza and Elizabeth D’Souza were changed forever when they discovered that their thirteen-year-old son, Kevin had committed suicide by hanging.
Traumatised by the horrific and tragic situation they’d been thrown into, the parents of Kevin searched desperately for answers as to why their son would feel so lost, that he felt suicide was his only option.
Kevin had been described as a lovely child, who was able to always make people smile. Why such a sweet and happy seeming child would commit suicide, was a huge mystery to everyone.
And here’s the truth, the bitter narration which will leave you all with a bitter taste. Kevin was a victim of intense bullying from his schoolmates leading him to confess a fear of going back to school. His parents advocated the seemingly-reasonable approach of talking to the principal, an idea opposed by Kevin who feared it would make matters worse. However, unbeknownst to his parents, the bullying continued. Comments were made about his sexuality and even his close friends joined in telling others he was no less than a joker. It was ultimately too much for Kevin to bear and he killed himself at the tender age of thirteen.
There was yet another case of a young teenage girl taking her life after being a victim of cyberbullying. She was found hanging in her bedroom by her sister with the legs dangling and the ghastly eyes open. The teenager who was once a very bubbly girl fell prey to a sick mind who abused her online. Hidden behind a mask of anonymity, the sick predator attacked this vulnerable teenager to the extent she took her own life.
Bekon Smith committed suicide by walking into the path of a truck. Prior to the incident, she had scheduled a post on her public Tumbler page to go live after her death. In her final message, Bekon stated: “My death has to mean something”. She wrote about her struggles as a young transgender teen, detailing her wish to live as a woman with her parents, who had denied her request, claiming it to be an insult to God.
The post broke the hearts of thousands of readers, who actively shared the message in order to publicise the tragedy. After her death, Bekon’s mother still refused to use female pronouns for her daughter and would only refer to her by her given name of Bekon. She also refused to allow Bekon’s best friend, who had supported her decision to live as a woman, to attend the funeral.
The above case studies are our attempt to raise awareness on the issue of suicide of children and teens.
Suicide is a difficult subject to address. There are far too many tragic stories of people who felt the only way to escape their troubles was to take their own lives. When the people at the centre of these events are children, the dreadful emotions we feel are amplified.
Please raise awareness. Stop suicide among children and teens. You won’t realize how it feels to be sad every single day without your child even when you experience joy. It’s the goodbyes which hurt the most when the stories aren’t finished. You as a parent will never understand until it happens with you. It’s the child you will miss when you are breathing.
Save a child, save the Nation. Make the world a better place to live. Prevent suicide.
Note: These are case studies, the name changed to protect the identity
A different version was first published here.