A 13-year-old girl from India committed suicide after her mother banned her from using Facebook.
Aditi Gupta allegedly hanged herself after her mother prohibited her from using the social networking site. According to the Daily Mail, Gupta was reportedly upset when her mother told her that she was no longer allowed to have a Facebook profile.
Mohana Gupta, Aditi’s mother, said that she scolded her daughter shortly before she hanged herself, telling her that she was spending too much time on Facebook. The 36-year-old mother reportedly told her daughter:
“I want that Facebook account closed by the time I come home.”
She returned hours later from work, only to find her young daughter dead.
Distraught by the incident. Mohana told local police officers that she didn’t expect her daughter to commit suicide over “something so trivial.”
“I told her she was too young to be on Facebook and wasting her time,” said Mrs Gupta.
According to some reports, no one was with Aditi in the house when she committed suicide.
“I generally leave for work around 9.30 am. But my husband left early and my older son was at his grandmother’s house for the holidays.”
The Facebook-related suicide sparked heated discussions among netizens. On the Daily Mail’s comment section, some were keen on expressing their opinions on the incident. Most felt sympathy especially for Aditi’s mother. User missglimmer said:
“You are so silly to kill yourself over faceless friends, that’s too sad, now your mum will be blaming herself, I feel sorry for her.”
Another user named jeannie described the suicide as “frightening”:
“Teenagers of today are so quick to end their own lives after arguments with their parents. This is so sad and one has to be so careful about what one says and that is the real problem. It is such a waste and a few days later this young girl may have got over it. Really, really frightening.”
This is not India’s first case of teenage suicide caused by a Facebook ban. Just last year, a 17-year-old girl committed suicide by hanging herself in her room after a heated discussion with her parents regarding her reportedly excessive Facebook use. She was allegedly scolded for focusing less on schoolwork and spending more time on the social network.
The recent suicide sparked debates in India regarding parental responsibility and its application to modern-day parenting issues such as children’s social media activity.
Investigators have yet to conclude their inquiry regarding the Facebook suicide. No further reports have been released aside from the circumstances of Aditi’s suicide.
Should parents have a say on their children’s social media presence?
[Image from Wikimedia]