The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG) is highlighting Teen Suicide Prevention Week (11-18 February) to help parents, teachers and loved ones with tips and information to talk about Teen Depression and Suicide Prevention to their teens. 1 in 4 South African teens have attempted suicide, talking to teens about depression and suicide can help prevent them from taking their life. Most people are too scared to talk about the topic, or if they do they don’t know what to say.
“For many teenagers adolescence is a transition into a different stage of life of the beginning of living itself, however unfortunately for some it can also be the end of their life altogether. Teen suicides are real and rob many young people of a future and our society of a future. Let us speak about teen suicide today so that we may never have too again in the future.” Says Clinical Psychologist, Zamo Mbele.
Remember that people who are thinking about suicide feel alone and isolated, and often feel like no one understands how they feel. Changes in life may be upsetting and they may want to escape a difficult problem or situation, or get relief from terrible stress. You may know if your friend or loved one is going through a tough time.
Here are some common myths and facts about Teen Suicide:
death in the family – can cause depression. If you are worried about someone you care about, encourage them to tell their parents, see a doctor, counsellor, or teacher – you can even go with them so you know they get there, and they know you are there to support them. The most important thing is that they speak to someone and get help.
If you are worried about your teen or friend who may be depressed or suicidal, contact a counsellor at SADAG 0800 567 567 or 0800 12 13 14 or visit www.sadag.org . We can provide free telephonic counselling, info and referrals to resources throughout South Africa.