Society is defined as people living together in the form of communities. A society can be considered civilized if and when its activities are in their best interest, and that of others.
The situation in our societies in Giglit-Baltistan is a bit different, despite of the high literacy rate, as well as the general peace and cultural richness. In the past, in simpler communities, the social issues were less in numbers. The spirit of sharing and caring was more prominent, due to co-dependence. Interactions among the individuals were more profound.
Now, things have changed. We live a changed, and way more complex society, with access to technology that the past societies could even not imagine having. This has also complicated our lives and well-being.
Under the influence of media, youth have started living a life that’s not grounded in realities, but hinged on fantasies taken from the mass media that now stays with us at an arm’s length. There’s a disconnect between the physical world, and the imagine one. This disconnection the sense of reality and leads us astray towards darker paths. One of those paths is self-harm, or suicide.
The reasons and causes of suicide have either not been understood or ignored for long, leading to a crisis situation which is unfolding in our valleys, where every now and then teens are shooting or hanging themselves, or jumping off bridges into rivers, to end a thing as beautiful as life.
Depression is considered to be the most prominent trigger of suicidal tendencies among the youth. Depression, as a mental condition, can be grounded in household issues, relationship in terms of friendship or commitment for the better half, societal issues, substance abuse, domestic violence, violent past, failures, dissatisfaction, a feeling of being unwanted, or a sudden shock, among many others. Physical or psychological interpretation of this medical condition are differently presented in different studies.
Sometimes the symptoms of suicidal tendency can be highly manifest. Certain signs can be read, observed, and the propensity can be gauged through keen, non-intimidating manner. Too much negativity, hopelessness, escapism, unstoppable vitriol even in minor cases, dejection, liking for isolation, self-victimization and extreme hate for someone or something can be indicative of an inner turmoil.
In our day-to-day life, we should be smart enough to look at our friends, and try to understand them, without being judgmental and without being intimidating in any manner. Being supportive, offering solutions to problems, creating positivity and promoting love for life can be some of the ways we can help our friends and peers.
Teenage suicide can be treated or prevented through education and awareness. Parents should be educated so that they can encourage their children to share what ever problem or anxiety is a cause of irritation for them. The preventive measures should be at all levels, starting from home and moving to the prayer places, educational institutes, play grounds and other public places.This will ultimately lead one to be engaged with productive and positive activities rather thinking negative about his/her own life.
Though many factors have been discussed above, the most important lesson for the youth is to avoid and end any relation that cannot be successful. Pragmatism, instead of futile persistence and pursuits, is recommended. Before commitments and building relations, the component of enjoyment should be secondary and understanding each other for future prospects should be importantly considered. Avoiding any relations which can harm any one of the stakeholders or both of them is the key. We are all affected by failed relations indirectly because we have close coordination and networking in our areas. Parents, brothers, neighbors, sisters and many more can be, and are, affected after such losses.
The youth need to be smart thinkers, not emotionally vulnerable beings. Youth in any society can be the building blocks for development and positive change, while their emotional decisions and actions can also be a disaster for the community or the society.
This discussion is based on my own observations. We can generate debates by sharing our views, and coming together to discuss the issues at hand, instead of staying silent spectators. We can come together, discuss, debate, share and help each other, and our society, out of the dark alley where all are loses and nobody gains anything. We owe it to our parents and our society, to give them causes of happiness, instead of tears of sorrow.
I feel proud of being a society which is praised globally for almost everything, but at the same time, I also urge all of us to ponder more ver the causes of suicide, and come up with solutions. We can do it, like we have done it in the past.
Those who resort to suicide are very much part of our society, and we need to own them, and learn from the failures that lead to such tragedies. We need to revisit some of our practices, approaches, and way of thinking, to ensure that the society is livable for all and everyone.
Let’s promote love and care for each other. Let’s share our problems, think positively and learn to see the silver lining in each dark cloud.
The contributor is an M.Phil student at the Nanjing University of Science and Technology, China.
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