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Suicidal tendencies in children should be tackled

Suicidal tendencies in children should be tackled

Published:14 July 2020

Though the reasons for the suicides are varied,  it is believed that the lockdown has triggered emotional strain among children as they are not getting to close together with their peers at school which remain closed in the wake of the pandemic.

Bhopal | It is shocking to read the news that 66 children and teenagers under the age of 18 have committed suicide in Kerala since March 25, a day after the nationwide lockdown was announced to contain COVID-19.
What is causing the adolescent lives to be so hopeless that there is no ray of hope ahead in their life? Is it is because of the indefinite length of school opening or the inability to see their classmates and teachers, or is it mere loneliness or depressed state of mind? Or is based on the reason that parents rebuked children for not attending online class, or not allowed them online games or due to problems in families and substance abuse by parents?

Though the reasons for the suicides are varied,  it is believed that the lockdown has triggered emotional strain among children as they are not getting to close together with their peers at school which remain closed in the wake of the pandemic. In addition, there may be declining interest in friends, activities, or hobbies previously enjoyed,  domestic issues, lack of parental concern, poor communication between parents and child, parent’s improper way of dealing with the errors committed, that pave the way in spiking the number of suicides among children.

According to the latest survey conducted by Child Right and You (CRY), the lockdown period resulted in an increase in the relationship between children and parents. At the same time or in contrast, many parents report that their child became more nervous, anxious and short-tempered during the lockdown!

Obviously, due to lockdown, since children cannot go to school, or out of play, they are in tedious emotions and getting bored to tears.   Also, for many families, lack of money and too much debt experienced as the biggest financial constraints due to job losses, salary cuts, etc during this time of Covid, which might have created a chance for more possible parent-children clashes.
However, raising serious concern over the matter, the chief minister of the state asked parents to ensure a happy and peaceful environment at homes. He asked them to take more care of the children who are now devoid of school or college friends.  In view of the situation, the Student Police Cadet project is going to launch a telephonic counseling programme called ‘Chiri’ (Laugh) to provide relief to students facing mental pressure. The project is intended to strengthen students’ commitment towards their families and community along with enabling them to resist negative tendencies like substance abuse, deviant behavior, intolerance and other social evils.

Looking to the current complicated situation of children and families there are some schools that also have come up with on-line counseling sessions that help children cope up with the stress. Obviously, school and teachers can play a vital role as online schooling is on the way of new education.

It is praiseworthy now that the government of Kerala takes the decision to investigate the cause of the child's suicide and provide tele-counseling for the needy to help tackle suicidal tendencies in children. Besides, it would also be a good idea for teachers to set aside some time between online classes to teach a lesson on improving mental health to children and parents as well. Let the children realise that life is not about ending yourself, it is about moving forward.


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