There is tragic and truly sad news coming out of the Orange Walk district. The reports I am getting say that a 10 year old girl from San Lazaro village committed suicide by hanging herself. Multiple reports are that the primary school girl was found hanging by her mother. It is truly a tragic and sad situation. ~Patrick E. Jones
I saw this horrific news on Facebook last night. There were well over 100 comments made on this story. A few were expressions of condolence for the family. Some wondered if it was linked to some type of abuse. A few even sounded off about how it could be a murder and not a suicide. Most were in shock that a ten year old would think to do something like this.
What kind of trauma happened in the brief life of this little girl that caused her to lose all sense of hope? Was it a lack of love? Or because of physical or sexual abuse? Was it related to depression? Was she being bullied? All we can do is speculate until more facts are released for this case. But it left me wondering...just how common is suicide in children?
Suicide prevention was discussed at a Mental Health Conference in September last year. In May of this year counselors from Orange Walk Technical High School spoke with the press to discuss suicide in adolescents and it was reported that the number of suicides for 2012 at the time was five. While compiling information for this post I could not find any stories or statistics related to young children committing suicide here in Belize.
As we wait for more details regarding the death of this ten year old we pray for families whose lives have been affected by suicide here in Belize and around the world. For children to find hope in the midst of despair. And for families, teachers, counselors, and all who work with children to be vigilant to any signs that a child might be at risk.
Won't you join us in prayer?