17-year-old Malaysian animal rescuer was driven to attempted suicide after being bullied for being ‘dirty and smelly’

Source: ALIR via FB, Malaysia Trend

Bullying, in any shape or form, should never be tolerated. There is never a justifiable reason to make anybody else feel any lesser than they are, and the psychological toll that bullying leaves in its wake can often lead to much more severe consequences for the victim. Despite that fact, it continues to remain an increasibly pervasive social ill in Malaysian schools, with Malay Mail reporting that a study conducted by two NGOs in 2021 recorded as many as over 1,000 instances of abuse in schools, 299 cases which have been identified as instances of bullying.

17-year-old animal rescuer driven to suicide by bullies

And unfortunately for one young teenager, the effects of bullying have almost led to a tragic loss of life when he had attempted to commit suicide after being on the receiving end of continuous ridicule. According to local animal activist group and charity organisation Animal Lovers Independent Rescuer (ALIR), one of their caretakers had tried to take his own life after he had been bullied by his schoolmates for being ‘dirty and smelly’.

Faced with the persistent stigma of being considered as lesser than his peers, the 17-year-old would often find himself a victim of such antics as being ostracized by his school mates, and even had his lunch tossed away into the bin, leaving him to starve at school. And while he had attempted to raise the issue to the school’s faculty, it was claimed that his schoolteachers had told him to resolve the matter on his own instead. The bullying was only further exacerbated by the fact that he was also living with 50 rescued dogs at home.

Downed pills and tried to kill himself during CNY

Unwilling to burden his family with worry, the young man proceeded to bottle it all up and suffered in silence, before the unthinkable happened on the second day of Chinese New Year this year. His brother had found him unconscious in his bed next to a suicide note he had prepared, as well as an empty pack of medicated pills. He had attempted to kill himself.

17-year-old Ed, who is an animal caretaker, attempted suicide after being bullied.
17-year-old Ed, who is an animal caretaker, attempted suicide after being bullied. Source: Animal Lovers Independent Rescuer (ALIR)

Arriving in grave condition at the nearest Emergency Room (E.R), the 17-year-old spent over 50 hours under intensive medical care and initially showed no signs of improvement. Thankfully later on, his condition showed an uptake and he was allowed to be transferred over to the wards. He has since been discharged from hospital and will still require check-ups and reviews from doctors as well as professional therapists.

“Caring for animals is one of his way to escape from all the traumatizing episodes and been dealing with severe depression all these years without proper help and treatment.” the animal rescue organisation wrote.

The organisation has urged Malaysians to keep in mind that those working with animals shouldn’t be looked down upon, as they are merely trying to provide a better place for creatures that would otherwise have no place else to go, adding that bullying should never be tolerated.

If you or those around you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, know that help is always available and that you do not have to suffer alone. Contact the Befrienders today via 03-76272929 and speak with someone today.

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Also read: M’sian firefighters successfully save young man from committing suicide off KL Tower’s Sky Deck

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