This story first appeared on the website of ChambanaMoms.com, an important resource for families in the Champaign-Urbana area. The child who died lived just about 45 miles east of Urbana.
The tragic death by suicide this month of Ashlynn Conner, 10, hit very close to home. The Ridge Farm, Ill. fifth-grader allegedly told her mother she was being bullied at school and the family is saying that harassment from her schoolmates contributed to her death.
Ashlynn’s parents say their daughter was the victim of schoolyard taunting from a group of girls at school, and that the relentless teasing continued even after she told her teacher about it several times.
While we cannot claim to know exactly what happened between Ashlynn, those girls and her teacher, we do know that sometimes it can be easy to miss the signs of bullying, especially when it comes to the less physical bullying that can happen between girls.
But boys, too, are often the victim of bullies, as we saw when 13-year-old Asher Brown killed himself in 2010 after constantly being teased about being gay.
The scariest part of these stories is that the deaths of these children came as a surprise. That’s why parents absolutely must be alert for signs of bullying.