“I am responsible for my suicide. I cannot fulfil papa’s dream.”
This is an excerpt from a suicide note of a student from Kota. A common reason for stress comes from parents and families, to do well in the all- India board examinations, especially in Class XII. The final marks in the board exams are what determine college admissions and also majorly affect future employment opportunities. Hence, most students between the ages of 16-18 years often face a lot of pressure from their families to score well in these exams.
When they are unable to fulfil these expectations, suicide tends to act as a means of escape. The constant stress and pressure of scoring well, meeting deadlines, increasing workload, ideas of excellence, competition, alienation, lack of space to share or even understand the stress and despair generated from such pressures are making students walking bundles of nervous wreck ready to break down at any moment.
What motivates students when they attempt to kill themselves is undoubtedly academic pressure. In fact, this accounts for almost 99 percent suicides in the concerned age group. National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) counts the number of suicides due to “Failure in Examination” every year. This cause of suicide and the number of deaths resulting from it are significant enough for NCRB to not relegate it to “Other Causes”.
Stress causes Suicide. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among teens.
According to the Health Ministry, out of every three cases of suicide reported in India, every 15 minutes, one is committed by someone in the age bracket of 15 to 29 years. A teenager attempts committing suicide in India every 90 minutes. The NCRB recorded a total of 22,319 suicides by students between 2012 to 2014.
Higher education institutions today have become hubs of depression and stress. Suicides are only a very small and extreme manifestation of it. It isn’t the suicides and suicide attempts, but this revelation from a recent survey that surprises everyone. According to it every third person in the age group of 15-19 is looking for help as they are struggling with ‘mental health’ difficulties.
People demanded that government set up a counselling centre in Kota. Succumbing to pressure from people, coaching institutes in Kota came together to start a counselling helpline. But as further reports showed, this helpline to is overburdened, with only two doctors, for over a lakh students studying in the city, and the suicides still continue.
Counselling: A Counter Measure:
To help not just the students of Kota, but all students in distress. Few Samaritans have started a Free Online Counselling Portal. “A Hopeful Tomorrow (ahopefultomorrow.com)” helps students interact with counsellors for free. (the “anonymity” aspect of these counselling classes make them even better)
Their counsellors will help students address their issues in the right way. “A Hopeful Tomorrow” is an online portal, might not help people who are on the verge of suicide. However, their aim is to ensure no student is turning suicidal. They are trying to provide an emotional support system, using which people can come up with depression and not turn suicidal.
Please share this message until it reaches every student. Together, let’s resolve to end student suicides. Lets spread the message.
Depression is a 21st-century epidemic. Let us kill it before it kills us. Even the most severe depression is treatable.
So, if serious problems like stress and depression restrict you from living life to the fullest, from being happy and content, then don’t hesitate in asking for help. Help is always at hand, you just need to ask.
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