Two More Deaths Blamed on New ‘Momo’ Suicide Game Taking Over MineCraft.

Dr. John DeGarmo
4 min readAug 17, 2018

In a disturbing trend, teenagers are increasingly turning to social media to commit suicide.

A 12 year old girl and a 16 year old boy have both taken their lives, within 48 hours of each other, in Columbia. When police looked through the phones of the two children, both had messages linking them to the new Momo game.

A new game has arisen online for today’s youth, challenging them to commit suicide. The game had already been linked to one death, the suicide of a 12-year-old girl in the town of Ingeniero Maschwitz, located near Buenos Aires.

Momo starts out by sending violent images to users over WhatsApp, the popular messaging app. Afterwards, the game next threatens users if they should refuse to follow the game’s ‘orders’. Recently, Momo has appeared on Minecraft, an online game that is popular with today’s youth. Indeed, Minecraft has roughly 75 million players each month, thus bringing Momo to millions of young players. Ads promoting Momo have also begun to appear on Youtube, as well.

Experts are warning parents that Momo could become the new “Blue Whale” game, the online game linked with 130 Russian lives.

In a disturbing trend, teenagers are increasingly turning to social media to commit suicide.

Perhaps one of the most alarming trends online is that of the pro-suicide sites that can easily be found on the internet through websites, chat rooms, and even with videos on Youtube. These sites offer suggestions on how to commit suicide, or as one site put it, “to find the final exit”. Online users can find suggestions on how to kill themselves while asleep, in front of others, in the privacy of a bedroom, or even through the use of over the counter medication.

To the surprise of many, suicide is the third leading cause of death for 15- to 24-year-olds in the United States.

To the surprise of many, suicide is the third leading cause of death for 15- to 24-year-olds in the United States, with roughly 5,000 teens taking their lives each year. Furthermore, at least 25 suicides are attempted by teens for every complete suicide. A study by the National Center for Health Statistics found that the rate of suicides in teenage girls has reached a 40 year high, while suicides among teen boys has also increased. By why such high numbers? Why are teens at risk to suicide?

At least 90% of teens who kill themselves, according to The American Academy of Pediatrics, have some type of mental health problem. This may include alcohol or drug abuse, anxiety, behavior problems, and depression. Indeed, these troubled youth also often have challenges and problems at school or with friends or family. For some, it is a combination of both. In addition, many of those teens that do commit suicide were victims of bullying, including cyberbullying, and of physical or sexual abuse. Along with this, there is often also a lack of a support network of some kind for the teen, as well as a poor relationship with parents and family members.

For those children who are suffering through great bouts of depression, online sites offer advice and suggestions from “pro-suicide experts,” as well as from others who try to encourage the depressed victims to end their lives. Adding additional confusion to these potential victims is the fact the many of these sites suggest that suicide is a positive solution to their problems, or even a spiritual release to their pain and struggle.

For that child who has known a life of pain, of abuse, of neglect, and of confusion, these sites may be the only release they can find to end a short life full of suffering.

Dr. John DeGarmo has been a foster parent for 15 years, and he and his wife have had over 50 children come through their home. He is an international consultant to schools, legal firms, and foster care agencies, as well as an empowerment and transformational speaker and trainer for schools, child welfare, businesses, and non profit organizations. He is the author of several books, including The Foster Care Survival Guideand writes for several publications. Dr. John has appeared on CNN HLN, Good Morning, America, ABC Freeform, and elsewhere, He and his wife have received many awards, including the Good Morning America Ultimate Hero Award. He can be contacted at drjohndegarmo@gmail, through his Facebook page, Dr. John DeGarmo, or at The Foster Care Institute.

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Dr. John DeGarmo

Leading foster care expert and international empowerment speaker