Another young man in town hung himself

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by hearts and roses, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    A day after attending the wake/funeral service of a young woman shot and killed by her boyfriend (and father of her 14 month old son), who then killed himself...I found out this morning another young man from town has hung himself. The word is that his girlfriend cheated on him.

    Why do so many 20-somethings have such trouble coping? I just cannot make sense of this at all.
  2. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Jo... Part of it is simply that they never learned the skills to cope. That's a generalization, of course, but many of Gen-Y/millenials' parents are helicopter parents. I'll jump in and help my kids - if they are helping themselves - but I don't do it for them. Onyxx does fine with this (now that she has realized my stepping back doesn't mean I don't love her); but Jett thinks it should be done for him and gets upset when things don't magically appear. I worry more about him, now - his coping skills are in the toilet. Onyxx is working on hers, but she learned a LOT in Residential Treatment Center (RTC). One major thing - how to listen and perhaps learn from others' mistakes.
  3. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Step, I couldn't agree with you more. The greatest change that I have seen in 30+ years of teaching is that parents simply refuse to let a student face the consequences of their actions. Forgot their homework? Mommy/Daddy leaves work and drives to school to bring the homework. Forgot their lunch money? Mommy/Daddy drives to school and brings them fast food.

    Misbehaves in class and is assigned a detention? Mommy/Daddy calls the school and wants to know why the teacher is picking on their perfect child. I could go on and on.

    Kids don't learn coping skills because they never have to cope with failure or disappointment.

    Sadly, I was guilty of doing that for difficult child and I believe it was one of the factors that led to her lack of coping skills today. easy child was always more independent and I backed off and she is doing great today. I wish I could have a do-over.

  4. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    That is what I think as well. They are never allowed to fail or feel disappointments so they haven't learned the necessary coping skills to deal when things don't go the way they want them to. So many of them are raised with accolades but have never earned when everything goes to hell in a handbasket, they just don't know how to react.

    I also feel that pop culture dramatizes EVERYTHING and so this up and coming generation of young adults tend to be drama kings and queens...everything is a HUGE deal, they overreact to every little thing that happens in their life and also need to post it somewhere...and God forbid if they don't get instant responses or recognition, oh my god their world is ending.

    I'm sad, but I am also angry.
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Different theory. This is the supposedly "connected generation".
    But... technology doesn't create or support real relationships.
    What it does support is some degree of detachment, and some degree of a "fantasy world".
    When the real world doesn't work that way... they don't know how to cope, because they haven't learned the skills that go with real life.

    JMO, but... in general, social internet is either dangerous or deadly, and especially when used by people under age 25 for a significant part of their "communication and interaction".
  6. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Kathy - see, this is one of the things that made me CRAZY when we first took over custody of the kids. Bio would take them fast food for lunch on a regular basis - they had money in their lunch accounts. If they ran low on money they had to let us know - and very rarely did that ever happen.

    Left homework at home? Too bad. Gym clothes? Sorry. Missed the bus? We're at work, it's not that far. Walk. Now that Onyxx is at the JVS and Jett is at the middle school, it's too far (10 miles for her and 4.5 for him), but if they have to have a ride... They wait till we are off work.

    Detention? What'd you do to get it? Find your own way home...

    The worst part is the teachers who, when we gather for the parent-teacher conferences, seem to expect us to do stuff for Jett. Nope. Just cause I won't do it FOR him doesn't make me a bad parent.
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I think it's the overcompensating for 2 working parents, which leads to the helicopter parenting. The "connection" of the internet ect and the over dramatization we see surrounding us in media exacerbate the issue.

    I was a stay at home mom, and I still didn't helicopter parent. Far from it. My kids interaction with the internet & other media was strictly limited, so their exposure was low and they grew up away from drama. Often, they would gawk at their friends, totally not understanding their behavior. If my kids wanted extra money they had to work for it, and they would work. There was no allowance, family lives in a home and everyone contributes to the running of that home/family. They felt natural consequences for their choices. Mom rarely intervened except when a consequence was ridiculous. (Such as trying to suspend easy child for wearing jeans she could walk on when the girl is 4'11" and finding petite jr jeans is next to impossible and costly) They were taught before leaving toddlerhood that while they were loved and cherished, the world didn't center around them.

    As a result, my kids cope with what life throws at them pretty well, no matter how bad it is.

    I find myself much relieved that for the most part, my grandchildren are being raised the same way. easy child is still battling the working mom guilt........but I do see hope there, and much progress. She might flood the boys with stuff, but she's beginning to see what a waste that is and that it's not the stuff they want, it's just some of her time.

    I do worry about this helicopter parenting phenomena though, because it's not just parents doing it.........but society seems to be embracing it. Then when something like this happens they're just so stunned the young person could not cope.

    Step, I amazed more than one of such teachers.........and ticked off plenty, when I flat out refused to make school issues into home issues. lol Of course I'll never forget the teachers who couldn't thank me enough for actually giving my kids a bedtime before 9pm, which meant they weren't falling asleep at their desks or being grumpy or whiny in the class all day.
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Suicide is a pretty serious solution. From one who has lived with mental illness, my guess is that people always k illed themselves, but that it was considered so shameful (even a sin in some religions) that suicide was not named as a cause many times when it was. I don't think healthy people kill themselves. Suicide is associated strongly with serious depression and I believe bipolar has the highest rate of suicide in any demographic, even higher than schizophrenia (I read this, do not know if it is accurate).

    I don't think suicide has anything to do with parenting, just as any sort of difficult child-ing is due to parenting. I do think it is part of mental illness, and most people with unstable mental illness can not handle pressure as well as balanced individuals. Certainly, the woman who killed her husband and child then herself was not at all mentally normal and did not handle situations in any normal way.

    Just as autism has come out of the closet (it was hidden back in my day and most types of autism were not even acknowledged), suicide has come out of the category of "dirty little secrets in my family tree." With the internet, it is very hard to hide anything today. It was much easier to do it in the past. I think we sometimes try to make things too plus one equals two when often it doesn't, at least no t in real life.

    I'd bet that almost everyone who commits suicide has a history of mental illness and/or drug abuse in his/her background. Also, many don't have strong family support. Unfortunately, I spent many years being suicidal and nobody EVER tried to solve my problems for me. My family life was totally neglectful and everyone denied I had a mental illness. Any trauma I went through was on my own. So I will agree to disagree and continue thinking that suicide is just more known about now than it used to be. An interesting bit of trivia is that if somebody has a relative who has committed suicide, they are at higher risk. I really think some of it is genetic. Doubt anyone committed suicide because he/she got a pass if she didn't turn in homework or if he/she forgot his gym suit...unless there was also mental illness involved.
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Some people always had trouble coping. I notate that most people even today do not have trouble coping. I'm going to tell a story about a lady who lived in the 1940's/1950's, allegedly those golden years when you HAD to own up to your mistakes and nobody coddled you. This lady could not cope. She gave birth to a little boy and put him in foster care because she was too "sick" to take care of him. She was ALWAYS sick. She spent her life in bed acting like she was a step away from dying. She did not know her own family...visits were few and far between. She was labeled "lazy." This sick lady lived to be 94 years old. This lady was my great-grandmother, whom my mother named me after. I always wondered why she named me after HER...lolol. I was NEVER as unable to cope as she was, but...

    These things happened. Nobody talked about them. Obviously my great-grandmother Pamela was mentally ill, but nobody called it that back then. In fact, a lot of my family tree is/was obviously mentally ill, but were not called that. And, of course, nobody outside of the family knew when somebody had an "episode."

    My poor, sweet grandfather, may be rest in peace, never ever knew a mother or had one because she was unable to cope with having a child...hell, with even getting out of bed. And this was back in the "good old days."
  10. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    MWM - you do have a very good point.

    Mostly what I was thinking is - OK for instance Onyxx has been diagnosis'd bipolar, and I do believe it is the correct diagnosis for her. Many times before we took over custody, bio would drop everything for her every whim, including days off school for shopping (and a few of those after we did, too). Anything at all. Now add this to the bipolar - and no coping skills AT ALL. So when husband and I wouldn't?! RAGE.

    Jett is a little different, his coping is to bury himself in a video game, TV or movie - keep small, quiet and out of the way. Not a healthy way to cope, since this also means he is now addicted to this stuff, and ignores everything else to feed that need. He comes by addictive behavior honestly - mother in law, biogma, biogpa, bio, husband to an extent (husband has an electronics addiction, too - but not to the exclusion of everything else).
  11. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    I didn't mean for that to come out sounding like I'm blaming parenting, because I'm not in the least. Suicide has always been around, caused by a wide variety of things. But I do think we've been seeing an increase due to coping skills not being taught/learned the way they once were. A person ill equipped to cope with crisis is more likely to find themselves overwhelmed by circumstances that wouldn't overwhelm someone who does have good coping skills. (in my opinion the mentally ill don't really fall into the category because you can have someone who is mentally ill and has those skills who is unstable and winds up in the same situation for different reasons)
  12. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Its not just coping skills... its also support network.
    When I was a kid the majority had one or the other, if not both.
    Now... maybe there are more people who have neither?
  13. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Good point IC. I think that plays a large factor too. People used to have large extended families who rallied the troops when they were needed, and there usually someone with which you were close that you could lean on when you needed it. Many families are losing this as well as we become a more self centered society.
  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Well, I still don't agree. When you are in a depressive funk you care little about coping skills...if it is debilitating enough all you want is for the pain to go away. Many people with a strong support system still commit suicide. And I don't think there is any increase, just as I am not sure there is more autism than there used to be. As we continue having a social network and learn more about certain problems, we hear more about things that were once hidden. Remember when we all thought battered women didn't happen much? If you're as old as me, you remember. Of course, that was not true. It's just that battered women stayed with their abusers because divorce was so shameful and hard to go through that women stayed quiet and put up with it.

    The more we learn, the more we see. But in my opinion that does not mean that there has been any increase. We just have more knowledge of what goes on in the world. Heck, in my great-grandmother's day, the only way people could hear a message was by radio. There would be no real way of knowing how many people died of suicide (not to mention the cause was often hidden). Everything is more out in the open now. And as time goes on, things will even be MORE out in the open. And everyone will lament over those "good old days." Today is our grandchildren's "good old days" lol. But they really aren't. They are just days, filled with the good, the bad, and the ugly.
  15. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    I believe that suicides have more to do with mental health and how well that part is taken care than with anything else. Or maybe with culture and 'trendiness' of suicides. Suicides are well known to be epidemic, as odd as it sounds, they are like infectious disease. Especially wrong kind of media attention for them tends to increase suicides significantly.

    We have some of the same complaints of our young you have mentioned, but still our suicide numbers are going down significantly (30 % in twenty years.) So I wouldn't blame lack of coping skills and not knowing how to deal with disappointments when it comes to suicides. But in my country there has been a lot of talk about if the increase of depression and anxiety are partly because of lacking coping skills and kids not learning to overcome difficulties because parents help too much.

    Unfortunately at the same time also our society is going to direction there 'helicopter parenting' starts to make more and more sense. I can easily understand why US parents feel need to save their kids from their own troubles. To be honest your society doesn't feel too forgiving and people are not getting too many second chances. Your kids seem to have to do well in school from early age to be in track for good college. And bigger screw ups during High School can be very costly. I can easily see how parents would feel that consequence of some relatively small misstep in school is too big and try to save their kid from that. I have to say that after reading this board, I'm dumbstruck of your legal system. Before, after watching movies and tv shows I for example thought that felonies were really big crimes and that is why it made some sense that being a felon would influence rest of your life (even though even that feels quite a bad idea for me), but here it seems that many of your difficult children have felony convictions from things I would consider rather common stupid teen kid crimes, that are mostly just idiotic and not too serious.

    Our criminal system id much softer but our schools have transformed more to direction of yours. For example in old times in our High School only last year grades counted. So even if you did badly two years you could make it up by working hard in the third. Now you have to do well during three years to have high grades. still we do have more emphasize on finals though and it is not uncommon for someone to have a bad GPA and good results from finals and our Universities are mostly interested about the grades of finals. And they still accept most of their students based on entrance exams so those who flunked both grades and finals still have a chance. But they are changing the system so that emphasize is more in grades which of course makes a system much less forgiving for mistakes. And it is hard to let your kid make mistakes, if the consequences are in no respect of the mistake.
  16. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    MWM I agree that suicide is nothing new. What is new is the rise in suicides among younger people, such as teens and 20-something's.

    What used to be called teasing is now referred to as bullying...our society has become so politically correct, if you will, to a fault. Helicopter parents never give their children an opportunity to grow what used to be called a thick skin.

    I agree that some level of mental illness must be present to take ones life, even fluctuating periods of low level depression, but I do feel that societal norms have change and is also a contributing factor.
  17. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I don't agree that some level of mental illness must be present to take ones life. I think to assume so, just because the majority of the time that is the case, is wrong. What about the person who receives a dreadful terminal illness diagnosis and chooses to end it sooner with some measure of control, than later? That is just one example, and a rather good one in my opinion. Statistics of suicide dramatically increase during high unemployment rates and economic crisis as well.........they were rampant when the banks failed in the 30's and no way am I going to buy that all of those people were mentally ill. A perfectly sane person can have a series of life events that bring them to their knees and without adequate coping skills and or supports, they can and do make the choice to end their lives.

    It took every single coping skill I have and then some during this past year, not to mention the unfailing support of my family and this board. It wasn't just losing Fred, although that alone would've been was mother in law and bff and several other things back to back that kept right on piling on. And even with my coping skills (and trust me, I've walked through the depths of hades more than once in my life.....I've got some darn good skills) and a really great support system, there were times when it almost was not enough.

    And after living through what I've lived through in my life, I have no trouble understanding that a person in a deep enough crisis without coping skills and support would be overwhelmed to the point of tossing in the towel.

    Suicide is not a new phenomena. And unlike domestic violence ect, the statistics on suicide are more accurate because it's been against the law for ages, so police reports have to be filed and investigations made. You can't sweep a suicide under the rug or hide it behind a closed door.

    I think because suicide is so disturbing, because we believe life is so utterly precious (and rightly so), we like to convince ourselves that someone must be mentally ill to throw it away. It makes us feel better, makes us feel more secure with our own loved ones that it could never happen to us.
  18. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hound Dog, I love ya and often agree with you, but I don't this time. Mentally healthy people don't kill themselves. I'll back off of this one.

    Now onto this one. I was bullied badlly. It is a trauma and it IS bullying. We just let it go at one time. When kids in groups of ten corner you, beat you, call you names, and belittle your very existence and nobody does that help the child? I have never trusted people much because of that and, worse, never liked people much because of it. It's not something you ever forget. If you are prone to depression this is a very big reason for suicide. Many things are, if you aren't mentally healthy, such as families disowning their own kids for reasons they can't help, such as being gay or not going to college.

    Suzir, anyone in the US can go to college. There are many ways to get to college. I don't think you are reading our country right. I don't know where you are from, so I don't know your perspective, but our movies and television shows are not correct depictions of our country. They are somebody's imagination laced with drama to catch the viewer.

    Back to everyone, when I went to school we WERE on our own. And there was no ADHD. And no learning disabilities. And no excuses if you couldn't learn. You were "dumb" and teachers could call you dumb and they did. I had a teacher pull me to the front of the class and throw me into the blackboard while making fun of me as the class roared with laughter. Then she tossed my desk over because it was messy and made an example of me again. You think that is better? Explain how. Of course, the kids just hated me more after that and they copied the teacher. I could not stop the bullying (yes, bullying) until I escaped to high school where other towns joined my town and I could find new friends. By then however my self esteem, especially with peers, was basically "bad attitude."

    I also have one child who is 34 and one who is 28. That is the generation behind mine. There most certainly were teenage suicides then because a few happened in both of my kid's classes, devestating my children. One girl seemed to have it all, but after her death her poor mother told us all that she had severe mood swings. She hung herself. The other kids I don't remember...I think drug use was involved.

    Taking one's life is the opposite of what healthy people do...fight to survive. I still say that to take one's life, the person has to be unstable or pushed to instability by so much outside pressure that one feels it is better not to exist than to go on the way things are.

    I will bow out of the discussion now and hope there are no hard feelings, long as I've been alive the older generations have been berating the younger generations as being "weaker" "not as good" "low in values" etc. And our grandchildren will criticize us too. In the end, mentally healthy people are resilient. Mentally unstable people need help or they may kill themselves. And I agree with intervening in bullying. It is a horrible thing to be on the receiving end of it. Nobody can fight ten kids at one time. It doesn't build your character.

    Ok, I'm done with the topic :) Peace! :)
  19. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    my perspective for that is not from tv and movies (that was the understanding that felonies are serious crimes), but more from local kids and their parents who have went to US colleges (mostly with sport scholarships) and some ex-pats I know who have lived in the USA for years, had their kids in your schools and considered letting their kids to go to college in the USA. According to them good four year colleges (and continuing after that, sole bachelor degree doesn't get you far in our country so even if kid goes college in the USA but thinks coming back they have to plan post-graduate to have jobs most of us middle class people want to our kids) want very high GPA through High School and any kind of disciplinary issues are considered very serious hindrances. Even one or two F's when kids are still rather young and first or second year of High School can be a major issue.

    And first you have to get your kid to right track of classes starting from middle school or even earlier. Your average smart, but lazy and immature kid can screw their possibilities of higher academical tracks when they are still in middle school by not doing/turning in homework, even if they do master the material. That happened to one child in the family I know. They spent over a deacde in the USA and because of not turning in the homework in middle school (and parents wanting to teach him a lesson and not getting involved), their very smart kid wasn't able to get to IB program in High School, had to take lower level courses, couldn't be send back home to University because of low level of courses in High School (he would had needed to re-do high school at home to be considered ready for college level work here, our academic path High School is very similar to IB, level of work is the same and differences between the two are very small all together), parents had to pay for huge amount of money for him to go to college in very mediocre US college and only after having very high GPA on there for four years he was able to get back on track and come back home for post-graduate degree. Not helicoptering, when child was in middle school cost that family over 100 000 dollars. I can easily see, why people don't want to take that chance.

    And your kids are very easily suspended and even expelled from school in our standards. Let's put it this way, my kids have combined 23 years of school behind them. During that time not even one student has been expelled from their schools. I know about one suspension from those years and it was a major gossip because it is so very rare. From my point of view, you are very harsh with long term consequences with your kids. Our society is mostly much more eager to give a fresh starts and second chances after screw ups. Of course we have much less people, so we simply can not afford to cast away people like that.
  20. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Taking one's life is the opposite of what healthy people do...fight to survive. I still say that to take one's life, the person has to be unstable or pushed to instability by so much outside pressure that one feels it is better not to exist than to go on the way things are.

    And this is what I should have said - mental instability.

    Lisa, I personally feel that if one has been diagnosis'd terminal and is sick of the pain, suffering, etc., one should be able to take their own life with dignity and grace in a way of their own choosing. That is not the issue I was talking about.

    By what we know of this young man and the other other man who killed his baby-mam and himself, it was a case of handling stressors that MOST people can cope through. The more recent man found out his live in girlfriend was cheating on him. The other young man was dealing with his girlfriend's decision to leave him. I do believe that siutational depression is a mental disorder and, at the very least, mental instability, and that was what was going on in these two cases...and several other cases within our town where homicide/suicide has occurred.

    It has recently been repeatedly reported in various national newspapers and medical journal magazines that suicide among TEENS and 20-SOMETHINGS is on the rise and that, in fact, people in those age groups are more likely to die of suicide than from auto accidents. My question is WHY? It isn't ONLY mental instability/disorders - I firmly believe that changes in societal norms are to blame, mainstream media, sensationalism, and the effects of Hollywood on our children, among other factors.