The eminent former Bollywood actress, the author of Mrs Funnybones, and The Times of India columnist, Twinkle Khanna brings before us a stark issue of an immensely increasing rate of suicides intertwined with social and parental pressure, among children, especially between the ages of 15 to 29 as specifically established by the World Health Organization.
Do parents unconsciously add to the pressure that causes children to commit such extremities while they are pushing them to aim and rise higher? She asks a vital question “…but do we teach them that it’s okay to fail?” so that they do not end up feeling as if they don’t belong and hence don’t deserve to survive?
Here’s telling you what leads children to take such drastic measures and how a parent can prevent their kids from going as far as giving up on their lives when overcome with pressure and anxiety.
DO YOU EXPECT YOUR CHILD TO BE AN ALL-ROUNDER?
It is natural for parents to expect out of their children but it can affect the kid psychologically if the expectations rise to an unhealthy level. Parents must understand that their expectations may not be consummate with their children’s skills or efforts. Everything has its own charm and let your kid propagate the talents that they have. Encourage them to sharpen the skills they possess instead of unnaturally expecting them to possess all sorts of skills you would want them to; one must realize that it isn’t humanly possible, and it creates enormous pressure on your child to live up to yours and society’s expectations. Don’t overwhelm your child with expectations and contribute to the imminence of suicidal tendencies in them.
ARE YOU ACADEMICALLY BURDENING YOUR CHILD WITH YOUR OWN DESIRES?
The practice of burdening one’s children with their own desires is prevalent in many families even now. Parents even in recent times force children to take up subjects like Science or Mathematics although the kids may have no affinity towards these subjects whatsoever. There exists a widespread belief that runs in the society that mainstream educational choices are safer and more benefiting to their children; however this is an utterly flawed concept because every individual has varying preferences according to their personality traits and it is important that they are given the freedom to choose what line they want to, because they will prosper and keep happy in doing what they find their interests in.
IS YOUR CHILD EXPERIENCING CONSTANT FAMILIAL DISPUTES OR IS PART OF A BROKEN FAMILY?
Personal strife between a mother and a father must be kept hidden from children. Constant fights and violence can deteriorate your child’s mental health often leading to mental diseases as a consequence of trauma. Children will stop believing in the sanctity of marriage and relationships when they find their closest people struggling with their relationship. It can lay an excessively negative impact on their personal relationships as well, which will cause further disturbance leading to suicidal behaviour. For that matter, even separation can lead to severe consequences of psychological breakdown in children when they feel torn between the two parents. Thus it is vital that parents maintain a cordial relationship with each other in proximity of the child at least, if not in general, to secure the child’s well-being.
ARE RELATIONSHIP ISSUES BOTHERING YOUR KID?
Your child may be subject to a toxic relationship which they may not be open about with you. It is hence necessary that parents maintain a friendly relation with their children so that children don’t hesitate in sharing these things with them without the fear of being judged or rebuked. Relationship issues are extremely sensitive and have been a great cause of suicidal tendencies in young adults in the recent past…
OR IS IT THEIR SEXUAL ORIENTATION?
Your children trust you the most. If you don’t accept them, who will? You must accept your child’s sexual orientation with a clean heart. One does not really have a choice in cases as these. It is absolutely natural and biological; something that cannot be altered if and when desired. Parents must understand this. It wouldn’t affect your child as much even if they are hauled by society, provided they have your support but when they are disregarded by the family itself, it could easily lead them to want to give up on their lives as they are made to feel like an outcast.
Prevent the impending suicidal tendencies in your child. Be a responsible parent. Help your child by checking them from succumbing to social pressure by standing independent from societal expectations. Introspect into your child for latent fears, pain, stigma and worries, encourage them to get over the fears, by engaging in friendly and guileless interactions with them and if it occurs that your child is suicidal don’t hesitate to seek immediate professional help.