Mumbai Girl Dies By Suicide, Family Says Was 'Stressed' By Her 1st Period

The Malad home of the 14-year-old girl who dies by suicide


She was 14. Had never been to school. Then came her first period. Even though she was informed by her mother that it is “normal”, the girl died a day later by suicide unable to handle the “stress”, says family.

The death of the Mumbai girl, who lived in a chawl in Malad, on March 26 has reignited a national conversation about period awareness.

“She was under stress. We shouldn’t have left her alone. There was pain; she did not understand what happened. I told her it was normal. But I didn’t think she would take such a terrible step,” her mother told NDTV.

The cops say they are recording the statement of the neighbours and will investigate the matter.

Sumita Belare, who has been working on health issues in the same area for many years, said that women and girls shy away from even saying the word period or menstruation.

“The girls refer to it as water. When we take workshops on this subject, family members do not send girls or women and say, what will they do? This is common. Why talk about it. They look down upon it. I am surprised at this thought. And this thinking is prevalent among women of almost every category, not just those who are economically or socially backward,” said Sumita Belare, Malad Yuva Sanstha.

This very important and basic thing of life should be made mandatory in the school curriculum, said Prateek Thorat, a teacher.  

“In Marathwada, a girl said that her father told her that God has “punished” her. That’s why she doesn’t go to school. Period is called a punishment. Information about periods and body party should be made mandatory from Class 1. Only then will thinking change,” said Mr Thorat.

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