Is Parenting Related to the Increasing Number of Suicides of Students in India?


 

Last week, a 15-year-old boy, about to appear in the upcoming CBSE exam, committed suicide in our locality. Family sources are trying to make it look like an accident, but according to the boy’s friends, the boy had succumbed to the continuous pressure thrust upon him by his family. The pressure of ‘best’ performance, the desire to be the numero uno in every aspect of life are affecting the teenage minds. The fear of not finishing as the topper is pushing them to the brink of self-destruction.

suicide

India Tops The Chart For SuicideΒ Cases Among Youths Aged 15-29

You are reading it correctly. According to the Lancet Report of 2012, report of NCCB (National Crime Control Bureau) of 2015 *these are the ‘latest’ ones*, every hour a student commits suicide in India! The reality is shocking and, we don’t need any highfalutin jargon to understand that.

Are We Responsible In Some Way?

Nowadays, in all the cities and even in rural areas, nuclear family with a single child is a common practice. The burden of expectation from the parents is ruining the innocence of childhood. The parents want to fulfil their unfulfilled dreams, unattainable ambitions through the child. A happy child slowly becomes a victim; of the society and the education system of this country.

Note To The Parents

Our children already feel the peer pressure in schools. They need love and assurance at home that everything is under control. As parents, it’s important to encourage them and inspire them in the right way. My son has interest in Mathematics, but he doesn’t want to pursue science. In such cases, it’s better to choose the commerce stream instead of science. What is germane to my discussion is, that it’s important to respect the decision of our children, to understand their intention and interest while taking decisions about their education or career. Students often fall under the parental and societal pressure of pursuing a career of a doctor/engineer and end up with drastic effects.

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Researchers further reveal that young people often find it difficult to cope up with failures. Non-cooperation from the family has deleterious consequences. A failure doesn’t mean the end of life. Rather, it could be the lesson of a lifetime.

Parental Guidance and Encouragement

A friendly approach always helps. Children should be provided with a feeling of security, compassion and camaraderie; that they have the support of their parents even when the whole world is against them. This contentment is essential to maintain the equilibrium of life. India is witnessing sweeping changes inΒ socioeconomic, socio-philosophical and cultural arenas. While it’s comparatively easier for adults to get accustomed to these changes, students, especially teenagers are the most vulnerable ones and are prone to mistakes.
Parental guidance with love and friendship could be of great help to understand their intentions and attitude.

It’s of utmost importance to develop self-confidence in our children. Suicidal mentality often develops from helplessness and lack of confidence. We, as parents, should try to develop their inner strength and resources so that they can cope with the harshness life often thrust upon them.

“Behind every young child who believes in himself, is a parent who believed first”

Parenting is not a competition. Nor it has any rule book to follow. Every child is unique. As parents, we should support and encourage them to bring out the best.

qqqImage Sources: Dawn.com
yorktonthisweek.com

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105 responses to “Is Parenting Related to the Increasing Number of Suicides of Students in India?

  1. I can totally relate to this blog post..there was a time in my life when I was suicidal but thank god i am over that phase. and yes, parenting is a really tough job but if done right, you can make a positive change in the society.and if it isn’t done with care and love and yeah most importantly understanding and communication then you are ruining your child’s life.
    teenage is a tough age, we experience so many new things, so much is happening, we develop ourselves in this age. so when you come home battling with the whole world, you just want to be yourself, you want to feel like home, and when that doesn’t happen because of the pressure and expectations parents put on us, that just breaks you and it makes you feel suffocated.

    but struggles are a part of life, and the only thing that matters is that you don’t give up, nothing else matters.and now when i look back, i feel really proud of myself.
    just wanted to share my experience as a teenager.and thanks for writing this beautiful post.:)
    do check out my blog too- https://thesoulstories.wordpress.com/ follow if you like πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes. i agree that parenting is one of main reasons for committing suicide but it is also very important that every teenager knows that he/she is unique and can handle any kind of pressure effectively. Lovely post! Wonderfully expressed thoughts!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So true Maniparna. Sadly the voices of a few of us are drowned in the competitive hulabaloo of the entire educational system in India. ” Behind every child who believes in himself is a parent who believes first” , thanks for the quote. Lovely article!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for your thoughtful post on this difficult topic of youth suicide. A few year years ago our Son’s highschool had a young man of only 15 commit suicide and it impacted the whole community including myself and my sons.

    Like

  5. I am a 2 year old mom. I already feel the pressure that our society puts on the parents in terms of comparison.be it weight ,height, intelligence. I am trying my best to go against the flow and let my child develop at his own pace and space.
    I hope maximum people read this blog n understand that the change begin from the roots. From us, the parents.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The level of competition and the mental stress in our economy has increased continuously. The forms a pressure on the parents as well as the children. The parents want the best for their child but the realization that nothing other than the best could help their child forms a lot of added pressure on both the parent as well as the child.

    You have written very well about the topic that isn’t talked in the society that much. Thank you for bringing such topics to light

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I did not realise that India had this problem! The usual (popular) believe is that this affects countries like Japan and Singapore where parental pressures for being top of the class is very apparent!

    I am not a parent but I do know that moderation is key. On the one hand you don’t want to “spoil” the kids but on the other, you can’t pressure them with unrealistic expectations.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I m in college now, two years ago after the entrance exams I went into depression and the thought of suicide did cross my mind. I had started hating my mother. Somehow I got through it and there were career failures which taught me a lot.
    Later I figured out our education system is designed to put pressure on kids as well as their parents. I see fault in Indian parenting but don’t think they are very much responsible for it. I think system and society is making it very tough and then telling kids that they’re not strong enough.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with your point. The system is wrong nevertheless. But, parents, most of the times, show a herd mentality and persuade their children to become an engineer or doctor. There are many other career options but we often give a blind eye to those.

      I hope you are enjoying your life and education now. Failures are a part of life and a VERY important part. Failures help us identify our shortcomings. Enjoy life. πŸ™‚

      Like

  9. This is such good advice, Maniparna. Kids really do already feel so much pressure from their peers, their teachers, THEMSELVES, it’s so important as parents to support them in healthy ways and nurture their interests to hopefully avoid self harm

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Nice article highlighting the real problem behind young age suicides. Such article or post will force parents to rethink the way they behave with their kids. A kind of must read article for all parents.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I think such topics should always be in discussion because the fact is….with the intensity these topics are discussed with that same intention change is not taking place…
    Thanks for covering up such a contemporary problem of society and child education.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What a sad story. Too much pressure from society and parents. We have such suicides in Singapore too. When the kid cannot face the parents with their poor results. What the world is becoming?

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Such a sad reality, there is so much more to life than just school, marks, study, achievements. Every child is such a precious gem, and with such immense potential to do great things! Wish our society knew better… and it’s on each one of us, to stop for a moment, to talk about it and reflect on it so that we all can make a positive difference, together we can! Great post on spreading awareness, Mani.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You said it all, Arti. The gravity of the scenario is not yet taken seriously by different institutions and families. The sooner they understand, the better. Or, a day will come when each one of the students will need counselling to keep their mental equilibrium stable :/

      thanks a lot for sharing your take on the issue…. πŸ™‚

      Like

  14. Many parents are unaware of the influence they have on their children and very often they don’t set good examples as parents. Bad parenting IS the main reason for such tragedy. So sad. A very thoughtful article Maniparna.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I’m a 15 year old too. And it’s no surprise that every kid my age is under this kinda pressure. I really don’t know who is to be blamed, but is this what education is supposed to teach everyone? Our education system was supposed to teach us to be more human, and here we come across things like these every once in a while.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh! I can understand how young minds like you got affected by news like this. The education system has no place for understanding the problems of the students. Neither it ever tries to serve students’ interest. It’s your determination and resilience that speak the last word. To be a good human being, I think, is as important as scoring good marks.
      Glad to see you here on the blogosphere. Keep blogging πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  16. I echoed the same sentiments long back on another blog. Continuously pestering your child to work hard doesn’t help. If he/she had to improve, they wouldn’t have taken this much time.

    As you said, love and gentle persuasion is what is needed. You have let go also sometimes!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. This teenager suicide was like an epidemic in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan for many many years for the same reason. By the end of high school, they take an exam. The cream of the crop goes to the best university.
    Even before that, when they; finished a6th grade, they take an exam, according to their grades, they were assigned to different high schools. Education is a pyramid system.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Yes Mani. It’s true πŸ˜” Only parents can understand their children.My daughter is in class 8th she is very smart, active and a good learner,she can score 60 to 70% easily in every other subject but Maths is such a ghost for her she feels very sad and getting tense and always crying just because of the marks of maths,every time on parent teacher meeting she afraid to go to school,afraid from insults before her parents and classmates and their parents whose making fun of her,she getting upset from primary classes till now,even I always feel sad to see her sad.But I can understand that she is not made for Maths. I never pressured her to get very good marks. I take her in my lap and tell her about her good things and tell that you cannot get rid of Maths till class 10th,No school will teach you without maths so β€œit’s best way to solve the problem to face the problem”Just sit with calm mind ,some chapters are easy to understand,practice them again and again you can get passing marks, no need to get on the top. I never mind.The magic is appear she is scoring better she’s a happy child,let’s see what happens in finals but I am satisfied I love her so much.Make your child a good person not a top scorer. Life is not ending with the numbers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can understand her trauma with the subject. You are treating her in the best possible way. Pity on our education system that a student has to learn certain subject even when she/he completely detests it 😦 She has to continue with maths for two more years. Try to find out a compassionate, empathetic teacher who can guide her. But, I must say, you are a perfect mom ❀ My best wishes and love for your daughter.

      Like

  19. You are so right in this Maniparna. We are all shocked when we hear that a young person has committed suicide but the actions leading up to the act mostly go unnoticed.The show-off culture and the rush to push children in the rat race really creates a lot of pressure on the young minds.
    We forget that in the teenage the mind is limited in its capacity to withstand stress. With children and also their parents competing with each other the amount of stress can become unbearable for a child, who is not able to cope up or share it with anybody. As a result, self-esteem suffers, they display erratic- behaviour and ultimately take the drastic step. Thank you for taking up this writing about this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Somali for mentioning the show-off culture. This has become like a psychological disease, so much so that people compete with each other using their own children as pawns. The young minds suffer more always and often got engaged in activities that lead to deleterious consequences.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Very well researched and worded post on suicides amongst children owing to parental pressure. If someone asks a parent why they had a child – to have a human being to control and pursue their own ambitions through her or to love and hold a part of you that will live long after you are gone? Most parents yearn for children but then end up making them slaves to their own ambitions, leading to such sad events. Putting all their expectations on a child is so unfair!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Rightly said. Parents have no right to control their children’s lives in whatever way they want. Everyone has individuality and that should be respected. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your opinion… πŸ™‚
      By the way, I just read and commented on your latest post on wall frames, but the comment disappeared. Kindly check the spam folder…

      Like

  21. Very harsh reality Maniparna. Every kid will come out in an impressive way with all the uniqueness they have if parents don’t put pressure of expectation on their children. We cut their wings before they get space to grow completely. All our children need is our support and positive words. very nicely written.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Suchetana. That’s my point exactly. We should try to know their fields of interest and encourage them to develop on those fields by pursuing a career of their choice. Something they can enjoy. I had to take science due to my mother’s pressure and honestly, I didn’t come up with excellent marks. Fortunately, I got the support of my father and changed my career path accordingly. I know how painful and disappointing it could be when one has to study something one lacks interest in.
      Thanks for reading and commenting… πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  22. Good work – this is a timely eye-opener
    We face in a similar problem in your neighbour – Sri Lanka. Children are being pushed to perform because academic jobs are status symbols more than the performing arts, services (culinary etc) and more than manual work – repairs etc. It is sad because in more ‘enlightened’ (for want of a better word) the work you do for a living does not become the litmus test of who you are as a person.
    I long for the day when our nation will accept that the person who tills the field or who collects the garbage is no less a human than the one who sits behind the big fancy desk.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The problem is same here. There was a time when the country really needed doctors and engineers. Now, there is an excess but, the mindset hasn’t changed. We still think meritorious students should go either for engineering or medical. Humanities stream is looked down upon. Whereas there are numerous scopes to discover in different fields, we leave our thought to the primitive era. Unless and until we learn to come out of this typical social mindset, thing tendency of compelling the children to study what they do not like at all would never stop!

      Thanks for sharing the scenario of your country on this issue.

      Liked by 1 person

  23. This is a very important post and you have timely posted this artcile.

    With long study hours and heavy workloads, it is easy to blame the education system for a recent spate of student suicides. Conversations with counsellors revealed that young people find it difficult to cope with failure in examinations and careers and neither families nor other social institutions offer adequate support or solace. A majority of schools, universities, and institutions lack trained staff for counselling students caught on the brink of despair.

    Student suicides glaringly highlight our failure to protect and nurture our young children and call for a critical review of the education system and social structures. As adults, parents, teachers, and leaders, safeguarding the interests of our students is a responsibility we bear collectively.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Rightly said. With increasing pressure in every field of life, we need to understand that the children are already suffering. They seldom get regular free time to play outside with friends. Parental pressure sometimes becomes too much for them. The sad thing is, parents not at all do this to harm the child. They think it’s good to pressurize the child to make the future better. The case is not so simple, unfortunately, and leads to all sorts of problems.

      Thanks for sharing your valuable thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. This is an important post. My daughter in class 9 does not want to study. Our home is battle ground between mother and daughter. While I understand that bookish knowledge is killing childhood, we also need certain marks to get into school to follow our chosen career. Marks open door to college. In India people to opportunity ratio is low. That is why our society is competitive, too many people competing for too few opportunity. Besides self employment is looked down upon. Remember Pakoda jibe?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, every parent wants that the child should score well. The problem arrives when the expectation rockets skywards with statements like “98% na pele mukh dekhabo ki kore”. That creates an enormous pressure on the child’s psyche. And, yes, the dignity of labour is an unknown term to us…sigh…

      Like

      • It is true. There is pressure from parents and society. In Delhi between 95.6 and 95 there may be fifty students. In good courses and good colleges third list starts at 90%. In this scenario, those scoring less stand no chance. For engineering and medical, for 100000 seat, 10 lac students or more apply. My point is too many people too few opportunity. We need to think differently as parents, as educators and as entrant to job markets. Most Middle class people still hope for a salaried job, preferably government one. With reservation and quota what can an general category student hope for? Only thing he can somewhat control is marks. That is why the undue push. When I suggested Hotel Management as an option. I faced collective snigger. Oh! You want her to be an waitress? You figure. By the way admission to less glamorous courses is also merit or joint entrance test (non engineering)based.

        Liked by 1 person

    • That’s the root of the problem you mentioned. Most parents still possess the age-old mindset of pursuing medical and engineering. They fail to focus on numerous other lucrative career options. I really hope this trend changes, the sooner, the better….

      Like

  25. Sad and tragic and unfortunately the parents blame themselves or try to deflect the blame all together. When my brother committed suicide I heard all the excuses in the book but inevitably society is to blame as well as the surrounding family. his peers. If you really look at it we are all to blame.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Whatsapp group gulo jyoto mathabaithar karon. Aamakeo onekei bolto je aami nijer meyer podashunar aar exta curricular er byapare khoob ekta interest neyi na. I somehow always felt that I did not want to create unnecessary pressure. In fact, I had given her the option to choose whichever stream she wanted. It was her own decision to go for science. Throughout 11th kono class join koreni. 12th e giye engg coaching class nijer theke join korlo. I was worried like hell. Tarpore nijei manage korlo. So I guess, oder jokhon nijer theke ichcha hoye tokhonei ja korar kore . Nahole kore na,
      So better not to worry too much about what others are doing.Give guidance but let them have a say in their decisions..

      Liked by 2 people

  26. In my son’s school there is a WhatsApp group of parents and that group causes unwanted stress in my life…most kids in that group are pursuing multiple activity classes, abacus, Vedic maths, brain gym and diction classes, and then swimming, karate, basketball, cricket etc etc…those kids study till 11pm at night and they are super busy with absolutely zero time for free play..and these kids are still in primary section ..now you can imagine when will happen when they go to secondary school..I do feel that impractical expectations from parents is causing unwanted stress on kids..oi group e Oder Katha shune amari stress bere Jai to bacchagulo r haal bhabo

    Liked by 2 people

    • Parents’ WhatsApp group!!! That’s the place which once made me cringe in despair. I felt as if I’m an “inefficient” mom. They discuss studies and extracurricular activities of the kids 24×7, tuition classes future plans etc also fall under core discussion. Finally, I accepted the fact je aami otyonto baaje maa and stopped checking the messages 😦

      Jokes apart, sharing a piece of reality; there was a career-counselling session for parents in my son’s school. The experts said, that we should first try to understand and respect our children’s decision as far as choice of streams is concerned. One of the parents commented that whatever might his kid say, he would make him go for the science stream. Bhaabo just!

      BTW, what’s Vedic Maths?? This is new to me…

      Liked by 2 people

      • I also feel like a bad mom…am such a clueless mother..Amar chele kono extra curricular activities korena Karon onar kichui bhalo lagena..uni sudhu saradin cycle chalan free time e..and I am ok..but or bandhur ma ra boltei thake “you should put your son for some classes” ei bayase shikhbe erpor r shikhbena..but I believe if a person likes something he will learn..Amar baba retirement er pore computer classes join korechilo and he got distinction from NIIT..Jai hok hay Ami pagol nay oi mayera pagol..ato matha ghamate parlam Na bapu
        Vedic maths exactly ki amio Janina but cheler class er bahu baccha Jai..Ami detail e jene janabo.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Amio jaani..I was never interested in science subjects but kopal emon j class 10 exam e sab science subjects e letter pelam..I wanted to study geography kintu sobai bollo eto bhalo result r science porbe na?? byas, 11 and 12 was no less than hell..thankfully graduation e r keu jor koreni.

        Like

  27. Suicide among students has become a tormenting problem in our country. Too much expectation from parents, peer pressure and also pressure from society, teachers are the leading causes. You’ve nicely explained and also have tried to find out the possible solutions. Right parenting can help to decrease the number of suicides. Thanks for a timely and eye-opening post.

    Liked by 2 people

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