Awareness of the existing state of the world, now threatened by sophisticated methods of destruction, can cause depression which contributes to the adolescent's sense of frustration, helplessness, and hopelessness (Smith, 1979).

Faced with these feelings and lacking coping mechanisms, adolescents can become overwhelmed and turn to escapist measures such as drugs, withdrawal, and ultimately suicide.

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Some researchers attribute teenage suicide to the weakening of the family unit.

They argue that economic and political institutions have penetrated it, reducing it to a consumer unit no longer able to function as a support system, and no longer able to supply family members with a sense of stability and rootedness (Suicide and Attempted Suicide, 1974).

There seems to be universal agreement on the manner in which to counsel suicidal teens: 1. PREVENTION Community members, mental health professionals, school personnel, peers, and parents can play major roles in the prevention of teenage suicide.

Programs that build adolescents' self-esteem and inspire a sense of inclusion in society rather than alienation from it have been found to be particularly effective.

Our achievement-oriented, highly competitive society puts pressure on teens to succeed, often forcing them to set unrealistically high personal expectations.

There is increased pressure to stay in school, where success is narrowly defined and difficult to achieve.Sudden behavioral changes may occur: the youth may become disruptive, violent, or hostile toward family and friends; or unexplainably moody, suspicious, anxious, or selfish.He or she may spend a great deal of time daydreaming, fantasizing, or imagining ills, in extreme cases experiencing memory lapses or hallucinations. Contact someone who can help the adolescent if he or she will not do it personally. Do not leave the person alone if you feel the threat is immediate.It is estimated that 5,000 to 6,000 teenagers kill themselves each year, and at least ten times that many attempt to do so.Because many suicide attempts go unreported or are reported as accidents, the estimated number may be as high as 500,000 per year.Churches and other religious communities can sponsor suicide prevention programs, and engage youth in the planning and implementation of programs for aiding the elderly, working in day care centers, training peer counselors, and improving the environment.