SONGKHLA — Health officials are urging concern about the effects of social media after a teen girl was thought to have been prodded by Facebook comments to go through with hanging herself.
The 15-year-old, Grade 9 student in southern Thailand was found dead by police Friday after she wrote about committing suicide on Facebook and her comments were widely shared. Prior to her death, the girl posted a photo posing with a rope in a manner suggesting she intended to kill herself.
“I’m not seeking attention. I’m sorry I have to do this,” she wrote. “Goodbye. I’m so tired. I have devoted everything, even my life. Now this is what you want.”
The post drew a slew of mixed reactions, including numerous comments challenging her to kill herself.
"If you really have the courage, you won't post it. Just hang yourself. Done. Why post it on the social network? It's a bad example," wrote one comment to the original post.
Local police in Songkhla province were informed Friday afternoon of the girl’s death by her family. Police Maj. Aphiwat Buathong said relatives told them they found her dead at 5am that morning, hanged in the living room. The said they were in too much shock to notify police until 2pm.
“We already performed the autopsy. It indicated that she died from suffocation,” Aphiwat said.
A reporter said the family mentioned the girl being emotionally distraught over love, but that they did not find the death suspicious and did not want to discuss it further.
Panpimol Wipulakorn of the Mental Health Department urged people to reach out and notify someone to help those expressing such sentiments on social media.
“This case showed that people in the society are interacting with other people online without considering each other’s feelings,” she said. “They say anything just to express themselves.”