Our Masterpieces...Err, Our Novels

Monday, April 23, 2012

T is for...Teen Suicide

Controversial Song of the Day:  "Never Too Late" by Three Days Grace

For the entire month of April, we'll be participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Our theme for the month? CONTROVERSIAL TOPICS IN YA. Check out the link above for other awesome blogs participating.

Taken from epicalliance.blogspot.com
Did you know that suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death for people between the ages of 15-24, and the 4th for people between the ages of 10-14 (for other teen suicide statistics, please click here)?
When I was in high school, a close friend of mine ended her own life after breaking up with her boyfriend. When Quita was in high school, one of her ex-boyfriends also committed suicide. We couldn't believe it--we didn't want to believe it. But since we know it can happen to anyone--not just to people on TV--this is a topic near and dear to our hearts.
We work with teenagers everyday, and since I'm a counselor, I'm constantly on preventative alert. People joke all the time about how dramatic teens are, but any thoughts of hurting themselves is something I do not joke about. When one of my students was wrestling with the idea of suicide, I recommended a book to him (after alerting his parents and using several other counseling interventions, of course). Here are a few YA titles (or books with teen characters) that deal with teen suicide:
Have you ever written about suicide in any of your novels? What other books would you add to this list?


Jaye Robin Brown said...

I've only read Jay Asher's and Julie Ann Peters books. It's not a topic I enjoy reading about, but I can see how it could be helpful for teens to have these options available.

Lucy Adams said...

Scary stuff. You have fortitude to tackle these topics with teenagers. Thank goodness for people like you.


Sarah Kate said...

My current, almost ready to query, WIP is about a family in the aftermath of their teen daughter attempting suicide. Although it isn't an easy topic, I know it's important to keep inspiring people to think about it.
This is a great series you two are doing but my list of books to buy has grown hugely! Seriously though, it's brave to include the personal things and it makes it much more touching.

Jaime Morrow said...

Such an important topic. I've read THIRTEEN REASONS WHY and THE PACT, and both were eye-opening and gripping. These are books that people really need to read. Thanks for sharing your own stories.

KO: The Insect Collector said...

I'm glad that you (and these authors) don't shy away from this issue. I think that NOT addressing it is far more dangerous to the people dealing with these thoughts and feelings.

Melanie Conklin said...

What a challenging subject matter to write about. Thanks for the books list, I look forward to checking them out.

Pam Harris said...

Thanks for the comments thus far. I was a little nervous about writing this post for some reason, but I think it's still good to get the word out on books that can help others.

Katy Upperman said...

Suicide is a prevalent topic in one of my manuscripts... It makes me nervous to write about it and (hopefully) have my words concerning it out in the world someday because it's such a hugely important topic. Hopefully I've handled it as responsibly as the authors you mentioned did. Great topic for an T day, girls.