Sexually abused 12-year-old live streams her suicide. Video goes viral

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This spine-chilling incident is a reminder to parents on many levels. Could the suicide have been averted had Katelyn's family known of the ordeal?

Katelyn Nicole Davis of Cedartown, Georgia hung herself to death, according to this report. What’s unnerving is that the 12-year-old chose to live stream her suicide on Facebook, after alleging that a family member had sexually abused her.

How ironic that the child chose to reveal to the world what she endured, before ending her precious life, but opted not to say anything to her family about her anguish and hurt. Further traumatic is the fact that while the clip has been removed from Facebook, it is still going viral on various other platforms.

As per this report, the cops are powerless to stop it. The Polk County Police Department has been inundated with phone calls informing them of websites sharing the suicide video. Police Chief Kenny Dodd told Fox 5 that he urged several websites to remove the video. However, not many complied as by law, they don’t really have to. "But it’s just the common decent thing to do in my opinion,” he said.

Just the thought of what the family must be going through since this tragedy is unimaginable. However, I can't seem to look beyond the fact that 12-year-old Katelyn chose suicide over communicating her pain with her loved ones. Perhaps, she didn't feel confident that they would believe her, understand her, or even just hear her out. Perhaps... we'll never know!

Wondering how to communicate and listen to your child? Continue reading for some absolutely essential tips.
As our children grow older, some switch seems to turn off. Communicating with them suddenly becomes difficult. This doesn’t mean that there’s something wrong with either of you. It’s just that your adolescent’s brain is trying to process too many changes happening within his own body, and he is suddenly wondering whether you’d be interested in what he has to say. For parents of pre-teens, and for parents in general, here are some effective tips on keeping the communication channel open with your child:

  • Be non-judgemental: At least don’t make it vocal. As soon as your child feels that he is being judged for his thoughts and actions, he will clam up. He will start looking for more accepting, non-judgemental channels to vent out.
  • It’s NOT a big deal: Before you react to their concerns, relax. Most adolescents and teenagers will have doubts, concerns and experiences which will shake you, if not shock you. Do not panic. Remember, you were a teen once. Make them believe that they aren’t all that twisted as they believe themselves to be.
  • Be that sounding board: Who doesn’t like a good listener? Adolescents can especially do with some reliable sounding board. However, that also means that you don’t empathise overtly enough for his emotions to heighten. Draw the line.
  • Be sensitive: Let them be aware of your values and beliefs. But trod carefully. You don’t want them to feel that you are being all patronising about their choices.
  • Talk, don’t lecture: Make it a dialogue where even he is heard. Monologues usually go ignored, especially if it has even a tinge of ‘advice’ in them.
  • Consult: If ever you feel there is something amiss with your child and he seems to be unnaturally quiet, despite being spoken to, approach a counsellor. A professional will be better equipped to deal with extreme adolescent angst.

It's better to take that extra effort to speak and more importantly, listen to your children. Sometimes, a monumental tragedy can be averted by that one sensitive, heart-felt talk!

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[Image courtesy: Youtube]