Percentage of Suicide Attempts by Students in Grades 9-12

Young girl sitting agaisnt couch covering her face

A few weeks ago I (as with the rest of the world) was stunned to hear another suicide had struck the celebrity realm.  The tragic deaths of fashion mogul, Kate Spade and world traveler, foodie and storyteller, Anthony Bourdain left everyone thinking  “why did they do it?”.

Famous people aren’t your general folk, they’re celebrities, they have money and fame, so what was it that desperately drove them to this sorrowful end?  

We all wanted to be like them (me personally, I wanted to be Anthony Bourdain and travel, eat and explore the world).  They were people who loved and were loved.

A Forbes contributor, Lipi Roy wrote“They Had It All”:  Five Major Misconceptions About Suicide she talks about five stereotypical misconceptions people have about those contemplating suicide.  What impacted me the heaviest was the statistics, especially among our most vulnerable, young people:

  • 8.6% of students in Grades 9-12 reported at least one suicide attempt in the past 12 months.
  • Girls attempted twice as often as boys. (11.6% vs. 5.5%),
  • The highest suicide attempts are among Hispanic girls (15%) vs non-Hispanic white girls (9.8%; per 2015 Youth Risk Behaviors Survey)

As a mother of two, this is heart-wrenching.  What is it that drives our most precious gift, our young people, to believe suicide is the best way out?

One known cause affecting kids today is cyber-bullying.  

The impact of social media is overwhelming.  Growing up we had bullies in school, and everyone knew who they were. But today, it’s different.  

Bullying has taken a sinister turn. Now, the cyberbully follows you home via your smartphone and other electronic devices.

Gone are the days of locking yourself away in your bedroom to escape the bully.

Our kids are growing up with cellphones as part of their childhood experience. What can a Mom of a pre-teen who is just jumping into to the world of social media, do to help protect them?  

One way is monitoring your child’s social media accounts.

BulliPatrol is a  must have for parents of tweens and teens. They monitor your child’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts and send you a weekly report letting you know if any negative or harassing language is being used.  

This alert allows us, as parents to take control of the situation and take appropriate steps to end the problem.

My “Mom Toolbox” wouldn’t be complete without BulliPatrol.  The tragedy of suicide is preventable but we must be aware that there is a problem before we know to look for a solution.

Staying connected to those around us on social media, watching out for each other and taking the time to make a change makes all the difference.

Yolanda Guerra


Whenever you’re ready, here’s another way we can help you, help your child.

Download at Bullipatrol: 5 Reasons Why Kids Don’t Ask for Help


About guerray

As a former teacher and school administrator, I have always wanted to help children succeed. Little did I know that having my own kids would amp up my desire to make the world a better place for all children. I am a single mom of two…a smart, articulate and loveable middle schooler and a bright, free-spirited Autistic elementary schooler. I am a life-long learner. I believe that education is power, and learning happens in different ways. Some things we learn in a book but many more things come from experiences. Years ago, I made the conscience decision to have more experiences with my children and less stuff. I also came to understand that when it comes to having children it really does take a village and I am blessed to have surrounded myself with a diverse group of really good people. My hopes are like any parent. I want what’s best for my kids. I want to raise children who are kind, honest, loving and citizens of the world. I want to watch them grow, follow their heart and truly become who they are meant to be.

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