It was around this time of year that we first lost our first local youth to suicide in 2012. Sadly, it was by no means the last. And nationwide, suicide accounts for 13 percent of all deaths of youths between the ages of 10 and 24. In the wake of such tragedies, people naturally ask “why” and wonder what they could have done. Many may not know of the services that the wonderful staff of New Morning Youth & Family Services can provide.
It may seem odd that the general counsel for El Dorado Irrigation District would focus on this topic. I do so because as the board president of New Morning Youth & Family Services, I want to help our community to learn skills and tap resources to address brooding youth. I believe that once more people start talking publicly about suicide and troubled youth, we can increase our awareness of solutions and make it easier for those in need to take advantage of them.
Suicides by children 14 and younger are increasing. No one can explain the dramatic rise. Experts, however, cite family discord, problems with a boyfriend or girlfriend and school troubles as common triggers. At New Morning, nearly one in five of the youths we counsel has experienced suicidal ideation.
When should your family seek help? How do you get help? Does asking for help mean you’re a failure?
New Morning, thanks to the generous support of Jeanie Redmond, Bill Thorpe and Sweet Mix Media, has posted a short video on its website (newmorningyfs.org) that will help answer these questions. We hope it may be a first step toward providing you the information, confidence and strength to help your family make changes and restore hope.
New Morning has been a community resource for more than forty years now. I invite your readers to take advantage of it … and to tell their neighbors and friends.