Minor suicides - a new worrisome trend


Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Shaun Whittaker has called on the state to set up suicide prevention centres in response to recently reported suicide cases involving minors.


He said that these centres should act as support systems for minors and give them access to professionals and get the counselling they need.


 “What we have seen over the past few months is very worrisome and we need to take drastic action as a nation. Now is the time to act in order to put an end to this worrisome trend of suicide committed by minors.”


“Minors should never be triggered by any kind of problems that lead to suicide. Why would a minor even think of taking his or her own life? It is unexplainable and we really need to focus on stopping this social evil before it rots into our society,” he said.


Whittaker also said that the level of violence witnessed by minors is also a contributing factor towards the suicides, but that the parents of children who fall victim to suicide are not to blame solely.


“Throughout the years I have been doing research, and I have learnt that the society plays a major role in shaping the action of minors as well.”


“We as the society should learn to avoid violence-related issues in the communities in front of minors. It also starts at home, we need to change the kind of movies we expose children to. We need to teach them that talking about problems solves them, whatever the issues may be and that committing suicide is not an option at all,” he said.


Whittaker also said that parents should not be singled out as responsible for minors that commit suicide.


“Children who commit suicide could be traumatized, abused or neglected but parents are not the only ones to blame. What are we doing as neighbors for these children to trust us to talk to us if they encounter a problem? Minors should be able to talk openly to any adult about issues that are bothering them.”


Recently an 11-year-old girl from Walvis Bay was discovered dead in her home. The police reported that she committed suicide by hanging herself with a scarf.


She was a pupil at Immanuel Ruiters Primary School and lived in Kuisebmond with her mother.