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Suicides in the news

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Rambling thoughts this morning regarding suicide in the news again - Famous people who seemingly 'have it all' suicide and its all the talk in our communities. What to do if someone is suicidal, what signs should we look for? The big one for me - 'If You are struggling, please call this suicide number, help is available!' 


All for suicide prevention, bolstering and funding mental health services and awareness, doing away with the stigma. I get all that. Why does this broader conversation trigger me? Is it that I didn't try this one more thing? Is it that my non-famous spouses suicide didn't stop the world for a few days and garner a broader conversation? Just remembering the trauma I guess. I clearly won't be satisfied. If someone brings it up, my heart races. If people ignore it, I'm on alert waiting for the word.


Strength, love, compassion to the families of the afflicted. Its a rough road. I wish I could hug each survivor, I don't even know anymore if the hug would be for me or for them. 


Anyone else?

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Honestly, news of prominent suicides doesn't get to me anymore. Even if folks know of my situation and ask me about my or my late wife's experience, I can talk to talk to them without being upset.


I, like you, certainly support treatments and research to try to lessen the incidence of suicide but, at the same time, I hold the idea that, no matter what treatment(s) are provided, there will always be those that choose this path out of life. I'm not sure there can be anything that can be done to get rid of that slice of the pie.


Self-preservation is one of the strongest human traits. For a person to choose otherwise, it may mean that some of the causes are perhaps past our comprehension.


My late wife's psychiatrist, her MD and all her professional mental-health workmates (she was a family grief therapist) all knew she was going to kill herself one day. So did I. We all did everything humanly possible to intervene.


I guess I was already numb to it when it finally came. Perhaps I remain so. :( 


Best wishes - Mike      

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I can imagine all of the coverage would be triggering.  People need to think that if they follow all of the advice the "experts" are reporting about prevention it could never happen in their family.  A young man who grew up with my sons just completed suicide this week and I keep thinking about the impact of the news coverage of celebrity suicides on that family.  sending you a virtual hug.

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The recent high profile suicides have made me think even more about mental health and less about my husband's own death.  Throughout our grieving process, my children and I have been open about his struggle with bipolar depression and have been mental health advocates, but in recent days I've found myself pondering what can really be done.  While knowing the signs and having suicide hotlines may help some and as such are important, they failed my husband who hid all signs from me and I'm fairly certain never would have reached out to hotline.  I wish I had the answers, I don't.  It's my hope that someday we will have a better understanding and real answers.  I ponder whether we should have regular mental health check-ups like we have annual physicals and twice yearly trips to the dentist.  Is there something that can be incorporated into elementary health education alongside healthy eating?  But I don't have answers so for now all I can do is implore people to be kind and recognize that anyone and everyone is going through things we don't know and don't understand.


That said, every suicide whether high profile or neighbor or coworker's loved one still brings me to my knees.  I  remember the pain and my heart breaks for the loved ones left behind and for everyone like you who will also be reminded of that pain once again.  (((Hugs)))

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