Suicide

Another Young Life Gone Too Soon Due to Bullying

Another young boy has lost his life due to bullying and the complexity that comes with finding one’s own identity. 12-year-old Andrew Leach from South Haven, Mississippi was discovered lifeless last week. He was found hung in an outdoor garage.

Andrew’s parents Matt Leach and Cheryl Hudson knew their son was struggling with his identity and had been confronted numerous times at school because of it. According to WREG Memphis, Andrew’s parents didn’t suspect he was suicidal because as Hudson explains “I guess I was just oblivious to it. He just always seemed happy.”

Andrew’s school trouble began when he started to embrace his identity.

Matt Leach told WREG Memphis:

He was struggling a lot internally with sexual orientation. He finally came out with the information at school that he thought he may be bisexual. I think that really amped up the bullying.

After Andrew’s untimely death, his parents discovered letters that described the pain he was living with. Kids at school were threatening him by expressing that he wouldn’t be able to escape the bathroom.

Now, his parents want the kids at school to know the harm that they have caused and the effects of their actions on the lives of so many.

Leach and Hudson also want this to be a call to all parents to notice their own children’s actions and watch for signs of suicidal tendencies. Leach said:

If you think there's any chance of your child suffering from depression, their grades are drastically changing, their eating habits or sleeping habits changed, then get in their business. Talk to them.

The loss of any life is never easy, and more when it deals with youth who felt like they never stood a chance in this world.


If you or anyone you know may be having suicidal thoughts, contact the

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255

 

Actor Mark Salling Found Dead at 35

Mark Salling, best known for playing Noah on Fox’s hit show Glee, has been found dead near a riverbed in Sunland. There is no exact cause of death, but according to TMZ, it is believed he hung himself. Salling was 35.

In August 2017, Salling’s lawyer denied an alleged suicide attempt when he was seen with cuts on his wrists.

The actor was awaiting sentencing for a 4-7 year sentence in prison after taking a plea deal for possessing pornographic images of minors on his personal computer. The conviction would also have required him to register as a sex offender. He was scheduled for sentencing on March 7th.

According to TV Line, Salling’s lawyer released a statement about the actor’s death:

I can confirm that Mark Salling passed away early this morning. Mark was a gentle and loving person, a person of great creativity, who was doing his best to atone for some serious mistakes and errors of judgment. He is survived by his mother and father, and his brother. The Salling family appreciates the support they have been receiving and asks for their privacy to be respected.

Salling’s death is still under investigation.


If you or anyone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts, contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline or call 1(800) 273-8255

Researchers Say One in Every Four LGBTQ Youth Attempts Suicide

A study by the Journal of the American Medical Association is pointing out that one in every four LGBTQ teens attemps suicide in the United States.

The study, which was published recently but is based on data from 2015, was penned by UPenn’s Wharton School researchers Theodore Caputi, Davey Smith, and John Ayers. Together, the three looked over data about “sexual minority adolescents," which they ultimately decided would represent LGBQ youth (If you're wondering where the "T" is, more on that later).

Within the 15,624 people who participated in the survey, 40% admitted that they had seriously considered suicide at least once before. The three then compared that to the 14.8% of straight respondents who said the same.

But that’s not all. 34.9% of LGBQ youth admitted that they had planned to commit suicide at least once while 11.9% of straight youth said the same.

Lastly, 24.9% of LGBQ adolescents admitted that they attempted suicide at least once in the past year. The researchers then compared that to the 6.3% of heterosexual teens who had done the same.

“The most staggering finding, the one that really makes you think, is just how prevalent these suicide-risk behaviors are in the LGBQ adolescent community,” said Caputi, “Research has shown that suicide-risk behaviors are an indicator of extreme distress.”

“The more I researched the connection between suicide risk and teens who identify as sexual minorities, the more interesting it became,” he said.

“In particular, these results were so striking it was clear this work could have some real-world impact informing policy.”

Ayers then went on to talk to Reuters Health about the horror (and reality) of the statistics.

 “We must recognize LGBQ teen suicide is a national public health crisis and bring extraordinary resources to bear to address the crisis,” he said.

That said, this is only the start of researching the topic. For instance, the data that Ayers and his colleagues used had a significant lack of data about transgender youth.

“Limited by the lack of data for suicide risks among transgender adolescents’. Plus, its ‘60% response rate … may limit generalizability.”

For now, this is a start in the right direction, but there is more to be done.