Child Suicides Can Be Linked to Bullying, but It's Never the Sole Cause, Mental Health Professionals Say

December 21, 2018
News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News

USA Today

While bullying can be linked to suicide risk among kids, experts caution it is never the sole cause. Chronic relationship stressors, such as bullying, can place children at risk for depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts. However, multiple factors influence suicide risk, and adults can play an important role in addressing it. For example, parents and teachers can intervene when they see negative interactions between kids and help support those who are struggling. "We don’t want to send the message that if you're being bullied, it's inevitable that you will suffer and think about killing yourself," said John Ackerman, psychologist and suicide prevention coordinator at Nationwide Children's Hospital Center for Suicide Prevention and Research. "Families and schools can be in a position to identify that [bullying] is going on, address it, and help children develop coping skills." 

Spark Extra! Learn more about the relationship between bullying and suicide.

Populations:  Youth, Children Ages 12 and Younger
Settings:  Schools, Family Members and Caregivers
About Suicide:  Risk and Protective Factors
Planning and Implementing:  Promoting Mental Health
Strategies:  Life Skills and Resilience