Paris Jackson, the 15 year old daughter of the former superstar Michael Jackson, is reported to have made a suicide attempt today. From the reports that I have read her suicide attempt appeared to be more than simply a gesture but was serious in nature. We will be getting more information as time passes and will be hoping that Paris emerges from this attempt in good condition.
Many of those reading about this young woman’s suicide attempt may be surprised that such a lovely looking young woman with access to so many resources and opportunities would even consider suicide as a problem solving strategy. Let me tell you though that no matter whose teenage child you are and how much access a teen has to financial and other resources-depression and suicidal thoughts do not necessarily keep a healthy distance. I do not know Paris Jackson personally but it is quite likely that she was experiencing a level of depression or other unmanageable feelings like anxiety and stress prior to this attempt. Teens who make suicide attempts are generally struggling with overwhelming feelings that leave them in a state of despair.
Paris will clearly need both mental health treatment and some good social support when she is released from the hospital. Teens as well as adults make better recoveries from the slings and arrows of life if they have some hardy social scaffolding around them.
I wish Michael Jackson’s daughter the best of luck as she sorts through the events and triggers that led to her self-destructive behavior. Her father would have been devastated.