“Peer bullying does not cause suicide all by itself.”

This is a comment by wellokaythen on the post “Gay Teen Suicide Victim Was Bullied“.

wellokaythen said:

Peer bullying does not cause suicide all by itself. If there’s a suicide after bullying, the suicide is a combination of bullying and depression. If we want to prevent this from happening, we have to work on stopping the bullying and treating depression. Treating depression may even be the more important part, actually. I experienced virtually no bullying in high school and I had some moments of suicidal thoughts.

Also, I’m not sure what the schools are supposed to do about bullying that happens outside of school. So, on top of trying to teach 35 students per class period and be their parents for 6 hours a day, schools are now responsible for parenting and policing their behavior once they leave school as well? This may be heresy for an educator to say, but a teenager is not primarily a student above all other things.

If his school is anything like my school was, his peers targeted him precisely because he was vulnerable. Some of them no doubt tried to see if they could get him to kill himself. I don’t believe everyone who says they never intended to drive him to suicide or that they didn’t mean anything by it. It’s a cruel trick of nature that teenagers are deeply sensitive to bullying and enormously adept at it before their brains fully develop the ability to appreciate consequences and feel empathy. 

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