“Adolescence” is not just an age range (between ages 10-14); it’s lot more. It’s that time of one’s life when body and mind go through rapid growth and inconsistent hormonal changes. Research says that more than often adolescents show intense and extreme emotions as they are subject to mood swings. Adolescent brains are still developing and it’s pretty common that they show signs of confused expressions. It’s a critical time to identity development and it’s very difficult to set a pattern here; as every child is different.
Common teenage problems
Often the behavioral problems in teenagers are caused by faulty parental attitude.
It has been observed that the children developed problems like – Depression, Schizophrenia, Bipolar disorder, Anxiety attacks, Eating disorders, Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and harmful addictions because of the absence of an adequately healthy family environment.
Sometimes, teenagers are prone to fall prey to the influence of social media and skewed social relationships.
What is Blue Whale challenge
The Blue Whale Challenge is suspected to be a suicide game, typically targeted to teenagers and young adults, where a group of administrators assigns daily tasks to the participants for a period of 50 days. The game concludes on the 50th day with the player committing suicide. Participants need to share pictures of their acts in the group to proceed to the next step. No one knows for sure how this game is played. While some say the users install some app on their smart phone, others say it’s via social media platforms the curators and participants come in touch with each other.
The Russian context
If reports are to be believed, this horrifyingly dangerous game has been linked to at least 130 teen deaths across Russia and UK. Blue Whale game is reported to have started in Russia in 2013 and 22 years old Philipp Budeikin, 22, is believed to be the creator of the game. A Siberian court sentenced the 22-year-old Russian creator of the game to three years in jail for inciting Russian youths to kill themselves.
Chillingly enough, in an interview, Budeikin actually admitted that he indeed pushed vulnerable teenagers to take up this cryptic challenge which eventually caused death for many of them.
The Indian connection
On 29th July, a 14-year-old Mumbai boy jumped to his death from the terrace of a seven-floor building located at Andheri (E). Media reported that he had photographed himself sitting on the edge of the terrace just before jumping and captioned it: “Soon the only thing you would be left with is a picture of me.” This accident was the first in India to be linked with the infamous Blue Whale challenge. The police are still probing the case.
Ankan Dey, 14, from the district of West Midnapore in West Bengal was supposedly another victim of Blue Whale game who was found suffocated by a plastic bag in his bathroom on 12th August. However, the police investigations are still underway and no definite conclusion could be drawn whether or not the boy was playing the deadly game.
Mother of a 16 years old Kerala boy has recently filed a complaint that her son killed himself under the influence of the Blue Whale game. Similar incidents have been reported from a few other places like Indore, Bhopal, Solapur, where children have been saved from taking their lives. Though in all of these cases doubts were raised about the children playing the Blue Whale game, nothing has been proved till date.
How to tackle this menace
This notorious game is primarily targeted to the teenagers and understandably so. Parents need to understand and be cautious about the vulnerability their children are faced with when going through adolescence.
Irregularities and abnormalities to watch for:
Parents need to keep a close watch on whether or not their child is spending too many hours on the Internet. The Blue Whale game is believed to have challenges given to the participants that need to be performed in early mornings. Therefore parents should take a notice if their children are drowsy in the morning and the behavior is repetitive. It’s also better to keep a check on their social behaviors, academic performances, uncommon outbursts etc. Not just the parents, the teachers also need to keep vigilance and should report any abnormal behavior of any of their students to the authorities.Authored: 9amstories editorial
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