A year ago, 13-year-old Dylan was found hanging, by his neck, in the yard of his home. Dylan was rushed to the emergency room and after several attempts to Resuscitate him, he passed away.
I knew little Dylan. A vibrant young boy with hours of energy! He is missed.
" it is estimated that about 500 – 1 000 children die yearly playing this game in the US alone. It is difficult to track down the exact number as many of these cases are reported as suicides."
Scary, isn't it!
According to some research I did there are many reasons why kids play this game. Some are lonely and want attention, looking for new exciting things to do, some teenagers will do it for sexual pleasure - this is known as hypoxyphilia.
The game is played by compressing the chest or squeezing the neck with the hands or a ligature device such as a rope, a cord or a belt. Another variation of the game involves hyperventilating until losing consciousness.
Pressure is built up and when the hands or rope is released, just before you faint, there is this rush of oxigen to the brain and blocked up blood to the arteries. Makes you feel like your on a high.
Usually this game is played in secluded places, two or more join in. One to choke him/herself and the other to release the grip. BUT sometimes these kids, like Dylan, do it while they are alone. No-one to untie the knot or take off the rope.
Signes to look out for:
Inexplicable bruising or red marks on the neck
Ligatures tied in strange knots found in unusual places
Complaints of painful headaches
Wear marks on furniture from previous incidents
Unusual need for privacy
Changes in attitude, and increased levels of aggression
Make sure you have an open relationship with your children, even if the things they come up with are silly. Listen to them chat about their lives... I know this is difficult, I have two kids of my own.