Family: Teen's suicide tied to COVID-19 isolation
The family of a Maine 16-year-old who recently died by suicide says he cited feeling "locked in" and "growing apart from his friends" during COVID-19 and are warning others who feel the same way to seek help.
his love by so many that it's hard to believe he was this, this depressed. And he did this. Spencer Smith left a note for his parents, writing about feeling locked in the house and growing apart from his friends. Then he took his own life. He was just 16 years old. Now, after losing his son, J. Smith says, Our kids and our teenagers need better support during this pandemic that they need to be back at school and doing extra curricular activities The kids need there appears more than ever. Now. Pastor Mark Rockwood is the chaplain of the Brunswick Police Department. He says he's hearing from a lot of teens in his youth group about not being able to see their friends, some of them saying they have friends who are having dark thoughts, just like Spencer did. It's already a stressful time for many of them, and now, when they don't have the ability to have that social interaction with one another, that puts more added stress on them, according to a recent article in the International Journal of Medicine. Studies show that social isolation is often connected with suicidal behavior. The article goes on to say, from a suicide prevention perspective, it is troubling that the most important public health approach for the Covad 19 epidemic is social distancing. Smith says he knows the virus is very riel, but for teenagers they need face to face contact so they can let their emotions out, Smith says. Looking back now, he and his wife can see that Spencer was different. He was excited about the upcoming Brunswick Dragons football season until it was canceled. It was pretty devastated. Smith says he hopes something positive comes from Spencer's death and that the school board in Brunswick and others across the state listen to parents and let students be together in person if they feel comfortable doing so.