(Dyersburg, TN) Teen suicide is on the rise, and parents increasingly point to cyber bullying as a factor.
In Tennessee, one non-profit group’s suicide hotline has received more than 85,000 calls in ten years.
But what’s really alarming is to see how the numbers are growing.
In 2008, 9,095 calls were answered. Just last year, the total calls climbed to 11,665.
Growing up, Tracey Wallace had three friends commit suicide.
“It puts a big drastic change on your life and how you raise your kids,” said Wallace.
She says crisis hotlines are great because she believes teens like her own children face more pressure and bullying than ever before.
“There is more Facebooking, MySpaceing, parent aren’t controlling their kids with it they’re letting them say whatever they want on there, and some parents try to keep their kids from it, but they just go to their neighbor’s house,” said Wallace.
The state is actually broken into eight regions, with calls directed to one central crisis center in each region.
Memphis has its own hotline, and its suicide calls are up almost 25 percent. The calls are also getting more intense because the caller is often closer to committing suicide.
Bruce Naurt Says his girlfriend’s daughter was a victim of bullying, which can be difficult to get away from with today’s technology.
He says having the hotline isn’t enough.
“I think there should be more advertisement. I really do, and I think kids should be more aware of it,” said Naurt.
The Youth Villages Children’s Crisis Hotline number for West Tennessee is 866-791-9227.