Suicide is a reaction of a person to the problem, which seems to be insuperable, such as alienation, death of relatives, a broken family, and serious physical illness, impossibility to find work, financial difficulties, or a drug addiction. For the last few years, the number of young people, who chose a suicide as one of the ways to solve vital problems, has increased drastically. The subject of a suicide behavior is rather serious and demands critical evaluation and research on the real reasons leading people to physical destruction of the organism. Moreover, this type of the children’s and teenagers’ behavior can develop into “a mass suicide” when two or more people participate in an attempt or a complete suicide.
Among the nonspecialists, an erroneous opinion that suicides in general and youth suicides in particular are made only by mentally ill patients is widespread. The analysis of the corresponding literature shows that no more than 15 % of suicide attempts are inherent in people with mental deviations, such as schizophrenia, intellectual backwardness, and mental frustrations.
There are some examples, see below. A talented and emotional girl describes her condition like this, “My mother abuses me, beats me … I am afraid when my friends come to my place because they can learn it, I am afraid that the father will hit me on my back, it will be very painful. I am afraid to receive a bad mark – again shouts, clips … I do not want to live like this ….
A sixteen-year-old Jack arrived at the city from the Central Asia. He lagged behind at a new school in all the subjects because of moving and difference in programs. His parents did not help their son with studies, but they demanded good marks. After every parents’ meeting, the boy was punished. On that fatal day, his mother, having received a call from the school, sent her son to the bathroom to make a toilet. Having come there in a few minutes, she found her son hanging in a loop. The boy left a note: “I do not want to go on the meeting, I will be abused again”.
It is an extremely frequent occasion when the child is so afraid of punishment or is so tired of adults’ pressure, shouts, and disappointment that he or she makes a decision to die and reports about it in the farewell letter. However, from a psychological point of view, this explanation can be used only as an example of possible reasons. According to the official statistics, every year 1 100 000 people commit suicide, among them 350 thousand Chinese, 110 thousand Indians, 55 thousand Russians, 31 thousand Americans, 30 thousand Japanese, 12 thousand Ukrainians, 10 thousand Frenchmen. Only obvious suicide cases get to the official statistics; therefore, the number of real suicides surpasses official figures considerably. It is considered that more than 4 million people commit a suicide annually in the world. In addition, another 19 million people annually make unsuccessful suicide attempts (Hodgman, & McAnarney, 1992). For the last decade, the number of suicides among the youth has tripled. Annually, every twelfth teenager at the age of 15-19 years makes a suicide attempt. Russia wins the first place with an absolute number of teenage suicides.
60% of all suicides take place in summer and spring. This happens because the contrast between the nature blossoming and an invariance of the internal state is especially strong during this period. Adults are almost powerless and defenseless against the adolescence’s suicide, as every second suicide has no “presuicide” syndrome, a psychological set of symptoms accompanying the period of the suicide behavior development. In other words, the decision to die is born in the adolescent’s head almost immediately, and his/her relatives do not have time for considering the situation or comparing the facts. In order to remove stress and get rid of a psycho trauma, the teenager resorts to different but equally terrible means: a rope, height, poison gases.
According to the psychiatrists, among the adolescents of 15 — 19 years old the greatest number of suicides is made by the boys as their mentality at this age is quite fragile, and they are more subjected to psycho traumas than the girls are. Speaking about suicide forms, different medicines are often chosen by girls whereas boys more often prefer to leave life “by means of a rope”.
A great number of researchers consider that the most part of adolescents who made a suicide attempt or a suicide, were mentally healthy people (McIntire, 2007). It was also established that the adolescents, who committed a suicide or tried to commit it, had a higher factor of mental capacities, in comparison with their peers. What was the most important is the fact that 78 % of all suicides belonged to outwardly safe families with an average and above average prosperity. 83% of teenage suicides were associated with family troubles, as the adolescent could not take life in a family environment. The most widespread problems, which can push the child to commit a suicide, are a serious illness or death of a relative or friend, parents’ divorce, family alcoholism or violence, quarrels, scandals, punishments. Concealed troubles in quite a decent family, psychological violence over the adolescent can also be the reason. “The children in their agonal notes write that they are awfully offended that they are not necessary to their parents or relatives as they are not excellent pupils, not entrants, not students, not musicians and so on”.
One more reason of committing a suicide can be an unfortunate love. Adults consider a teenage love as something frivolous, but it frequently becomes a sense of life for the adolescent. These relations can become an important factor of self-image formation. When having an unsuccessful love experience, the adolescent can decide that he or she is a loser and thus his or her life is of no importance. A person believes that he or she is necessary to nobody in this world; therefore, it is better for him/her to die in order to avoid further suffering. A suicide because of unfortunate love becomes a frequent continuation of family problems, as children’s love is a reflection of the need to be necessary to somebody.
Problems in relations with peers can also become a reason of a suicide. The adolescent can feel as a social outcast, with whom nobody wants to communicate. Moreover, the teenager can be a subject of persecution and collective mockeries. The newcomers who entered a new social group, children from financially poor families, those who moved to the city from village, individuals with physical defects are more subjected to such a risk.
The suicide reasons among the youth can be school problems connected with an overload, poor progress, and conflicts with teachers or peers. “A special type of a suicide – a consumer suicide – is extended now”. Children make suicide attempts, having got a refuse from their parents to purchase something. The factors of a suicide risk are: heavy moral and psychological situation in a family or social group, death of a close person, rupture of the significant love relations, progressing serious illness, experience of an acute crisis, mental diseases, alcoholism, drug addiction, a suicide experience, popular in a certain group of people, isolation in the childhood, growing in the family where there are alcoholics, addicts, mental patients, an early loss of a mother or both parents, a commission of a penal act, receiving mutilations, irreversible traumas, a mental trauma as a result of violence, and many others.
Being in the high-risk group or existence of other suicide risk factors does not mean a suicide tendency; nevertheless, each factor should be taken into consideration. It is necessary to treat their combination or the existence during a long period especially vigilantly. It should be mentioned that love and sympathy helps young people appreciate life, and a possibility to talk “heart-to-heart” with the person who will listen, sympathize, and understand often holds from a desperate step.