Suicide and Teen Males

Topics: Suicide, Domestic violence, Psychiatry Pages: 2 (806 words) Published: October 14, 2014
Teen deaths for any reason are tragic losses of life and potential.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in five teenagers in the U.S. seriously considers suicide annually, and approximately 1,700 die by suicide each year.  Both the CDC and the National Mental Health Association (NMHA) point out that suicide rates for teens have tripled since 1960 -- making it the third leading cause of adolescent death and the second cause among college students.  Yet, according to the American Psychological Association, teen suicide is preventable, and they identify possible warning signs.  They also note that more than 90 percent of suicide deaths are from mental illness and substance-abuse disorders. Not letting facts stand in their way, activist groups continue to claim, based on a flawed 1989 study that has been completely discredited, that 30 percent of all teens who attempt suicide are homosexuals.  Instead, teen suicide reports from the major psychological and pediatric associations either do not even mention sexual identity or mention it near the bottom of a long list of other risk factors associated with teen suicide.  Other teen suicide factors -- family breakup through divorce, alcohol or drug abuse, and family dysfunction -- are mentioned in all the major health organization publications as main factors in teen suicide. Research from Columbia University Medical Center, published in APAM, cites different reasons for girls' and boys' suicides.  The researchers collected data from over 8,000 students in New York City high schools in 2005.  For females, recent dating violence is a primary cause of attempted suicide.  For teen males, a lifetime history of sexual assault is associated with suicide attempts.  Dr. Elyse Olshen, lead researcher for the study, reported that girls who have been physically abused by a boyfriend are 60 percent more likely to attempt suicide than those who have not.  For boys, sexual abuse over an extended...
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