Cameron Warwick

Photo of teenage boy with fair skin and brown hair hanging over his face. He has headpones around his neck. He is holding a small terrier and smiling for the camera.Name: Cameron Warwick.
Died: September 4, 2019.
Age at death: 16.
Cause of death: Suicide (After long-term bullying).
Location: Fareham, Hampshire, England, UK.

Cameron had come out as gay at age 12, and was constantly harassed by his schoolmates for being gay and autistic. They would trip him in the hallways, throw food at him, refuse to sit with him, insult him, and ostracize him. The teenager came down with depression, though he did his best to cope by talking to his family whenever something was wrong.

He was a talented artist, creating pieces themed around furries (humanoid animals); he also used his art to express his feelings about suicide.

Cameron wanted to study gaming in college, but although he had several 4s in his GCSEs, he came up short in his maths GCSE and opted for computer programming instead. Toward the end of summer holidays, he and his online boyfriend broke up. That, and the prospect of returning to bullying at school, may have been the last straw for him: The day he was supposed to start school, he instead went out into the woods and hung himself.

Teenager killed himself after being bullied for being autistic and gay
Teen boy died by suicide after ‘relentless’ bullying for being autistic and gay
Boy, 16, killed himself after ‘relentless’ bullying for being gay and autistic

Callie Lewis

Lewis, CallieName: Callie Lewis.
Died: August 31, 2018.
Age at death: 24.
Cause of death: Suicide/Neglect.
Location: Cumbria, England, UK.

Callie’s mother describes her daughter as “a spirited, determined, and exceptionally intelligent young woman”.

Callie had depression and had been suicidal. The NHS staff handling her case had no idea how to help an autistic person. They did not attempt to stay in touch with her, nor to maintain her care when a staff member went on sick leave. She was sectioned and hospitalized, but then discharged even though she was still suicidal. Two weeks after the discharge, Callie–who had been researching suicide methods online–was found dead from suicide.

Autistic people who have depression often have trouble maintaining contact with mental health services. For autistic people, initiating contact with a psychologist who is most likely a compete stranger can be daunting, and more so when their concentration and motivation are being sapped by depression. When an appointment is missed–which they often are, because with autism it can be hard to break a routine or leave a predictable environment–it is hard to navigate the social situations involved in making another. If mental health services do not know this about autistic people and do not offer services like appointment reminders, predictable appointment schedules, and home visits, they risk losing track of these patients and losing them to suicide. –Editor

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Roy Curtis

Habayeb, AymanName: Roy Curtis (Birth name Ayman Habayeb).
Died: August 21, 2019.
Age at death: 28.
Cause of death: Suicide/Neglect (Hanging; Ignored by social services despite needed support).
Location: Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, England, UK.

Roy lived on his own, though he was disabled and could not work. He was estranged from family. On government benefits, he constantly had to deal with paperwork and make phone calls, and with every move he risked that his benefits would be terminated if he did not do everything right. He was asked to attend a “work capability assessment”, where the officials ignored his needs and reduced his benefits. There was no one to help him with the paperwork, and every effort seemed aimed at rejecting him for benefits. Stressed, Roy came down with depression.

Roy was unable to trust the mental health system because he knew that the only help offered him would be a four-week stay in a crowded mental health unit, where he would receive little help, would deteriorate from the stress and lack of privacy, and would be inevitably discharged after four weeks even if he had not improved.

Eventually Roy was scheduled for another work capability assessment. Tired of being ignored and refused help at every turn, he declined to attend. His benefits were terminated and, unable to pay the rent, he was being threatened with eviction. He knew that he would be unable to buy food and would be homeless when his benefits were stopped; so he decided to, instead, commit suicide. His body was found hanging in his apartment months after his death.

Editor’s note: Making assistance impossible to obtain and making benefits impossible to maintain without assistance ultimately caused Roy’s suicidal crisis and death. His parents are angry that social services did not communicate with them about his case, but Roy had directly asked social services not to do so, and in this–though in nothing else–they respected his wishes. Social services were right to listen to Roy’s desire not to have his parents take over his case, but they were utterly negligent in not offering the help he needed, either with maintaining his benefits or with treating his depression. Had Roy had a reasonably competent case manager assigned to him, the outcome might have been very different.

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Daniel Ross

Name: Daniel Ross.
Died: June 29, 2019.
Age at death: 19.
Cause of death: Suicide/Negligence (Not informed of autism diagnosis; committed suicide).
Location: Hartlepool, Durham, England, UK.

Daniel was an art student who had always had problems with anxiety, especially in social situations, and was experiencing suicidal thoughts. At 19, he was finally booked for an autism assessment.

The assessment confirmed that Daniel was autistic, but the clinic failed to contact Daniel. Between the assessment and the diagnosis, 12 months passed.

Daniel, who had been struggling with depression, lost his life to suicide when he hung himself in a hotel room. He is mourned by his boyfriend and his father, who questions why it took so long to get him his assessment and communicate the results.

Autistic people who reach adulthood without a diagnosis frequently become depressed and isolated. In these cases, getting an evaluation and a diagnosis can be crucial to recovery, since not knowing how your own mind works makes it much harder to fight depression. The unconscionable delay in giving Daniel this information may well have raised his suicide risk. -Ed.

References: Teenager took his own life at hotel while awaiting autism diagnosis

Joel Crockett

Crockett, JoelName: Joel Thomas Crockett Devine.
Died: April 26, 2019.
Age at death: 19.
Cause of death: Suicide (Hanged self; bullying-related).
Location: Liverpool, England, UK.

Joel was a Liverpool football fan. He liked drama, and was a talented actor. At school he was popular, though he didn’t know it; his approachable personality, innocence, and good looks won people over despite his learning disabilities and autism.

Joel initially decided on a drama course at university, but switched to sports science and was set to begin the sports science course the next fall.

Things turned bad for Joel when someone from school leaked nude pictures of him online, and bullies started circulating them. They blackmailed Joel into buying them games and giving them money. Joel became depressed, increasingly quiet and sad.

After long-term intense bullying, Joel committed suicide by hanging.

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