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Increasing number of suicides after social media use surge

BY: NEELAM HASHIM

Department of Mass Communication, Karachi University

Suicides in Pakistan are increasing with the passage of time and have become a major social problem. What leads people to commit this excruciating act is the most important question. What emotions and thoughts passes one’s mind which compel them to kill themselves. Numerous reasons are there that push someone to commit this act. The most common problems for suicide include unemployment, heath issues, poverty, homelessness, family disputes, love affairs etc.

It’s the time of youth – the arrival of 3G and 4G in Pakistan in 2014, and a massive surge in the scale of smartphones has led to social media use surge; making youth know about largely taboo subjects such as love, dating, vulgarity and even sex is more accessible than ever. Youngsters can communicate online in relative freedom, they can express their views and thoughts over these subjects. But, still in the last few years that rate of suicide has increased.

Specially, the youngsters are committing suicide due to failure in love, rejection, getting hurt from their loved ones and there are many rising incidents of cyber, misogyny and harassment, as we have seen many social media related suicide cases in recent past.

Pakistani teenage girls face multiple issues. Not only their behavior can be judged as tarnishing the families reputation or honour, but it has also taken place in our society as a social problem. Many women/girls have been killed in the name of honour.

Teenage desperately want someone to guide them, to support them but society not even their families support them. In the dept of perplexity, they find nothing but desperation which create frustration and pushes them to end their life and leave no way out for themselves to get rid of their complicated life’s problems.

According to research, approximately 0.5% to 0.4% people die by suicide, about 12 per 100,000 persons per year in all over the world. But in Pakistan, one analysis of suicide reports based over a period of two years, 2015-16, showed over 300 suicide deaths in Pakistan from 35 different cities.

We can overcome this social problem by making youngsters know about the importance of their lives. They feel alone, helpless, hopeless and hurt. They don’t even think that this act will not only affect them, but the entire family will be affected too. Parents should be close to their children of any age group, they should interact with them, should ask them for their problems and complications in a friendly way. If there is problem their must be a solution as well, we just have to find it. Friends can also play an important role in saving their dear ones by persuading and encouraging them to fight with their problems.

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