PGK-Episode 160: Teen Suicide (with guest Jason Reid)
Play • 46 min

After losing his son, a grieving father goes on a mission to understand teen suicide. Jason Reid uncovers painful truths about the lives of teens, the impact of unfettered access to the internet and social media, and the shocking rise of depression among America’s youth. In examining his son’s technology use, he discovered what no parent wants to find. Seeking to uncover the warning signs that were missed, he instead found ways to reverse the isolation and disconnectedness that is killing our youth.

Dr. Meg & Jason Reid (Part 1)
Guest Jason Reid begins this episode by describing the days leading up to his 14 yr old son Ryan’s unexpected suicide. Looking back, he realizes that there were some warning signs, but he didn’t know how to read or respond to those signs at the time. Since Jason himself never struggled with depression, he didn’t know how to recognize it in his son’s life, and he didn’t talk to Ryan about mental health because it was never on his radar to do so – in his mind, depression and suicide were things that only happened to other people. Jason describes how he made the mistake of thinking that Ryan was “just another grumpy teenager” who wanted to be alone more and more, and retreat to his room. On a broader scope, Jason expresses how our culture needs to move from “creating awareness” of teen suicide to actually doing something to change the trajectory of it. He believes that we have the ability to end teen suicide by the year 2030, and answers the burning question, “How can that be done?”

Dr. Meg & Jason Reid (Part 2)
Jason Reid doesn’t want any other parent to have to endure what he and his wife went through in losing their son to suicide. With this in mind, he and Dr. Meg discuss the incredible need for parents to be aware of the mental health of their children. There is immense pressure on kids today, much more so than in years past, and their adolescent brains are not developed enough to know how to process the stresses and pressures that they are experiencing on a daily basis. Parents must not only be aware of their kids’ mental health, but every parent needs to be actively talking with their children about mental health, whether they suspect there may be any issues or not.


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