Ferris D. Louisiana

Teen Suicide

An essay on teen suicide

15 November 2016

Dear Future President:

On September 7, 2012, a fifteen-year-old Canadian girl named Amanda Todd posted a YouTube video about her life titled “My story: Struggling, bullying, suicide, self harm.” Her story told of how after she flashed her breasts during a webcam in seventh grade, a guy sent a picture of them to everybody she knew when she failed to “put on a show” for him. The anonymous guy kept tormenting her whenever she tried to create a new life; thus, Amanda Todd was constantly bullied by her peers. After getting anxiety, depression, and panic disorder, she turned to drugs, alcohol, and cutting. After “hooking up” with a deceptive guy whose girlfriend then physically and mentally harassed Amanda Todd in front of her whole school while kids filmed it, Amanda Todd got back home and tried to commit suicide by drinking bleach. She survived, but all the Facebook messages she got expressed that her classmates were wishing for her death. When the cyberbullying continued, she purposely overdosed. She survived once more. However, this is where the video ended, and one month later, Amanda Todd hanged herself. Suicide has always been a calamitous issue, but as more and more teens see suicide as a way out, teen suicide has increased in appalling numbers. In fact, teen suicide is the number three leading cause in teenage deaths, and these teens are the best, brightest, and kindest of their new generation. In order to prevent teen suicide, we must know the risk factors, raise the awareness, and understand what these teens are going through.

There is not just one thing that is responsible for suicide; it’s a variety of things. Despite some arguments, a big factor is homosexuality, or anything LGBT+. People say being gay does not automatically increase the risk of suicide. While that is true, the pressure and stress of being gay, coming out, and fitting in with a society that – depending on where you live – can at best be mildly homophobic to death for homosexual acts does in fact affect teens who are already going through the tremendous school and social life stress. Most people who claim that homosexuality does not affect teen suicide claim that one, albeit major, survey was taken in an area where troubled kids were known to go. While this may be true, more than fifteen other surveys by different people that have been taken give the same results. Other important factors include drugs and alcohol. In fact, two-thirds of adolescent suicide are connected to drug use. Bullying is perhaps the biggest factor in teen suicide. Bullied teens are tormented by some of their peers when they just want to fit in. With all these possible causes, we need to protect these teens who just want to feel accepted. We can help them feel accepted by creating a more amiable world to live in.

Some people now a day just accept all the bad things that happen and move on. However, we shouldn’t just ignore teenage suicide. The first step to not prevent suicide is to realize that its numbers are rising. Some reporters have said that suicide rates in teens have not gone up in some states as some rates are about the same in 2012 as 2011; however, the rate of teen suicides has risen four times since the 1950s. A recent high school survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control shows that twenty-seven percent of high school students had thought seriously about suicide in 2000. While not every suicide is recognizable, there are warning signs which include: behavior changes, personality changes, and health problems. By recognizing these warning signs people can help their family or friends who might be considering suicide.

Stopping them for just 15 minutes could return normal judgement to the teens as most suicidal impulses only last 15 minutes. Suicide attacks life just as much as murders and car accidents do. People are still dying from suicide, and those that don’t commit suicide are still affected when their children, their parents, or their neighbors commit suicide. These teens feel alone, so they resort to a permanent solution for a temporary problem. Most teens who try to commit suicide do not want to succeed; they just want to be helped. We need to help everybody who is thinking about committing suicide before they hurt themselves or others.




Kitts, Robert Li. "Homosexuality Is a Risk Factor in Teen Suicide." Problems with Death, edited by David A. Becker, Greenhaven Press, 2006. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=true&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010160248&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=true&source=Bookmark&u=lafa43079&jsid=ee9579208f20531deb452213c83aafef. Accessed 10 Nov. 2016. Originally published as "Gay Adolescents and Suicide: Understanding the Association" in Adolescence, vol. 40, Fall 2015, pp. 621-28.

Merritt, Nancy. "Teen Suicide Is a Serious Problem." Teen Suicide, edited by John Woodward, Greenhaven Press, 2005. At Issue. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=true&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010026204&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=true&source=Bookmark&u=lafa43079&jsid=84018e5d823cc52b38942b4694bfc0b8. Accessed 14 Nov. 2016.

Olson, Jeremy. "Teen Suicide Is Not on the Rise." Mental Illness, edited by Roman Espejo, Greenhaven Press, 2012. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=true&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010154270&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=true&source=Bookmark&u=lafa43079&jsid=b08850243babf2e35d35b7d06decfd71. Accessed 14 Nov. 2016.

Otsuki, Michiko, et. al. "Teen Suicide Is a Major Health Problem." Teen Suicide, edited by Christine Watkins, Greenhaven Press, 2014. At Issue. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=true&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010026229&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=true&source=Bookmark&u=lafa43079&jsid=864ec0cd246e5aa749b9c4d56187c163. Accessed 10 Nov. 2016.

Savin-Williams, Rich C., and Geoffrey L. Ream. "Homosexuality Is Not a Risk Factor in Teen Suicide." Problems with Death, edited by David A. Becker, Greenhaven Press, 2006. Opposing Viewpoints. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, ic.galegroup.com/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?disableHighlighting=true&displayGroupName=Viewpoints&currPage=&scanId=&query=&prodId=OVIC&search_within_results=&p=OVIC&mode=view&catId=&limiter=&display-query=&displayGroups=&contentModules=&action=e&sortBy=&documentId=GALE%7CEJ3010160249&windowstate=normal&activityType=&failOverType=&commentary=true&source=Bookmark&u=lafa43079&jsid=8f494efc74426d1d28e92e5066d0dbc7. Accessed 14 Nov. 2016. Originally published as "Suicide Attempts Among Sexual Minority Male Youth" in Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, vol. 32, 2003, pp. 509-22.

St. Thomas More Catholic High School

Guillory English III

Honors English III 1st period Honors English III 3rd period AP English III 4th period AP English III 5th period AP English III 7th period

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