Teacher shares sister's suicide to spread awareness

She wants parents to know - no matter how young - that it could happen to your child.

KUSA - As a parent, suicide can be a tough topic to talk about with your kids - especially if they're only 12-years-old.

But that's the age Melissa Broaddus' sister ended her life and now she wants parents to know this could happen to your child. 

"Some families might think, this is too young," Broaddus said. "This is a topic that's too intense for my child to hear about and handle but really we need to bring awareness because it is happening. That's the reality and so it's important to be able to have that conversation in a safe environment and talk about it." 

The second-grade teacher at Vanderhoof Elementary in Arvada held a suicide awareness meeting Thursday night where shared her sister Bonnie's story.

"That's my goal, is to give her a voice," she said. "To reach out to save lives." 

She also shared warning signs parents can look for like a change in eating and sleep patterns or grades declining. 

"So many kids have so much pressure on their plates and in their little lives and I think they're internalizing a lot and not having many outlets to vent," she said. "So having safe people like teachers and friends and parents and families where they can trust and go to as an outlet and have those conversations is so, so important."

You can get a list of other signs your child may need help by clicking here.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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