It was a Tuesday when Brandy’s family received an email from Brandy that she was going to kill herself. Everyone rushed to the house where they found Brandy alive with a gun in her hand pointed towards her chest. Her sister was already at home, when she heard the cries, she followed and rushed to her sister’s room only to find out the situation that shook her. What could a family possibly do when a teen has decided to take her life? No parents can even imagine such a situation.
This scene left the family devastated and broken. The father said he tried to talk her out of the situation, but she was not putting down the gun. It was as if she had already made the decision and nothing could stop her. The parents feel helpless when they saw their daughter taking away her life. Her elder sister also expressed her disappointment and helplessness when she tried to stop her sister but Brandy was just crying and crying.
Brandy’s last message to her family was: ‘I love you so much just remember that please and I am sorry for everything’.
Her family told the police that Brandy was facing body shaming and some people were continuously bullying her on the internet. They would post her pictures and number on the dating websites and made it appear that she was available for sex.. Her family told her to change her phone and number, she did everything all but the threats and bullying continued and there was no way to find out who was doing this.
Not only that, she kept on receiving such texts even after her funeral. When somebody opened up her social media, there were people putting condolences for the loss. But just a few minutes later, there were four posts about Brandy by strangers calling her big fat cow, saying ‘you finally did it’, ‘you are a coward’, etc.
The screenshots of these posts were provided to the investigators. Though no traces could be found so far, the police are trying to find something with the latest evidence. The family is pretty much disturbed and the father says that they are still harassing her even that she is gone, feels like they are harassing the family now.
When you see an 18-year-old kill herself in front of you, it is the worst thing that a parent can ever face. It is a nightmare for the parents and the loss can never be recovered. However, Brandy’s family wants police, investigators, school authorities, and other related departments to take action rather than paying condolences. They want people to know why does it happen to their kid and what can people do to prevent their kids from reaching this stage.
Why would a teen murder herself? Is body shaming capable of doing that? Is your daughter safe? Brandy was considered happy and safe too until the point where she killed herself in front of her family. This news would make most of the parents concerned about the safety of their kids. They can hardly tell what their teen is doing these days because teens are so secretive and stubborn, they hardly tell you what is going on with them.
But spreading the news is meant to give awareness to all the parents out there who don’t know what their kids are up to and are relaxed knowing that their kids are having fun. There are a lot of kids like Brandy who have killed themselves because of something the other person said or something that happened to them on social media. This is serious for the kids and parents need to keep an eye on them so that you can know when there is something wrong going on.
Still worried about that? Don’t know how to take the first step? Here are some of the tips for the parents who want to make sure their kids are not facing anything near to what Brandy was facing.
- Raising awareness among kids. Most of the kids don’t tell their parents because they think that their parents will take away their phones or gadgets. You need to change that perspective. You need to tell them that such things happen on the internet and when that happens, they need to come to you for a solution. Tell them about all the dangers that social media can put them through and teach them how to handle them without panicking
- Monitoring them is the best option one can think of. If you are monitoring their social media, you can know what they are up to, who are they chatting with, and what sort of comments and messages are they getting. Facebook spying can help you know if your kid is being bullied online or is bullying someone else. It takes no rocket science to identify the things that can be counted as cyberbullying or harassment. Once you know, you can take action.
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- Don’t ever take away their smartphones or access to the internet. The more you become authoritative, the lesser will they listen to you. So, keep it normal and balanced when you are trying to teach them about the wrong side of the internet and how they shouldn’t become a part of it. The more you become flexible, the better relationship you can develop. They need to know that they can come to you whenever they want with whatever dangers they have fallen into. Parenting life hacks can help you develop a good relationship with your kids.
Know your teens so that you can guide them well when they are losing hope and thinking about something bad. You can help them deal with these things better if you know when they sad and when you guide them.
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