Teen Suicide on the Rise - Maryland Mother Working to Reverse the Trend

27-Feb-2018

(WMAR) - It’s a touch subject to talk about; teen suicide. One in six Maryland high school students has seriously considered killing themselves.  One mother who lost her son is now on a mission save other families from that grief. 

“I think there’s so much stigma and so many taboos around suicidal thinking we’re really afraid to ask kids about it,” Susan Rosenstock, co-founder of UMTTR and suicide prevention advocate, told ABC2.

It’s a trend you may not think you have to worry about. 

“10-15% of youth have suicidal thoughts in their adolescent stage,” said Dr. Larry Epp, Director of School Mental Health Services, Sheppard Pratt.

Over 17% of Maryland high school students consider suicide.

“Suicidal thinking is never normal. It’s not normal growing pains and I think that’s why we don’t intervene,” Epp said.

Young people are now turning to social media to glorify self-harm; adding another player to the pressures of the growing up.

“It could be your appearance, it could be your popularity, it could be worries about whether you’ll be accepted for your sexual orientation, it could be worries about your family,” said Epp.

Epp and Rosenstock are on the front lines;  together they hope to give this issue the attention it deserves. 

“We need to continue to communicate, educate and motivate parents to understand the difference between typical teenage behavior and really a more serious problem,” Rosenstock said.

Rosenstock is the co-founder of UMTTR, an organization created after her own son, Evan committed suicide.


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