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Reflections on Celebrity Suicide and Everyday Suicide

When I first found out Robin Williams died, I literally thought – “Nooooo, if I can’t kill myself, why can he??”

Robin Williams was one of the funniest guys around.  I grew up watching so many of the movies he was in – Aladdin, Fern Gully, Robots, Happy Feet, The Dead Poets Society, Patch Adams, What Dreams May Come, Goodwill Hunting…the list goes on and on.

The problem is – some of the funniest people, that look so happy on the outside and make other people laugh and feel happy — they can be the people hiding and feeling so much pain and sadness themselves.  It is that mask that we wear.  Allowing everyone to see our funny, social, happy side – but never allowing our emotions of hurt, pain, sadness to be exposed.

When a celebrity dies of a suicide or drug overdose, we are all incredibly shocked and taken aback.  They either never seemed like someone who would do something like that — or they might have had a long history of stints in a rehab for their drug addiction.  Mental health has stolen so many brilliant actors/actresses/artists away from us.  —-

—-It has also taken away so many people away from us though.  People that aren’t famous.  The day Robin Williams died, there were others that also took their lives.  Their families were torn up by the news that their loved ones were found dead, dead because they too had taken their own lives.  I guess I began thinking about this aspect because a few days prior to Robin Williams’ death — another friend of mine lost her nephew to a suicide.   You hear about the famous people that take their lives, perhaps hear a bit about how we need to help those with depression reach out for help, and then its over.  What about those that take their lives everyday?  It happens so much more than just a celebrity losing their life every so often – it is happening everyday, multiple times a day.  We need more help for mental illness now!  More education, more programs, more psychiatrist and therapists – we need all of that so that everyone who is affected can get the proper treatment — whether it is the public or celebrities.  My friend’s family is trying to raise money for their nephews funeral, as it was extremely unexpected, if you would like to donate any money or simply leave a kind word the website is on gofundme.

I know I have tried suicide, a lot.  And I have gone back and forth in my mind as to whether I am happy or sad that I lived through it.  I am happy though I didn’t die though.  I am not always happy, by any means.  But, I am glad I was given a second change, and third, and fourth, and …. quite a few.

I really feel for Robin’s family.  I can’t even imagine how hard it is to lose someone that not only they loved but to also have to deal with the publicity of everyone in the world who loved him too.  I have lost someone to a drug overdose when she was basically self medicating for her depression and it hurts.  Losing someone to mental illness hurts.  I hope they are able to heal over time.

If you are thinking about suicide or even just having a hard time call:

1-800-273-8255

www.crisischat.org

www.IMALIVE.org

A list of International Suicide Hotlines can be Found Here

 

Post a Day – Looking Back, I’m Still Alive

WordPress- Post a Day

As a kid, you must have imagined what it was like to be an adult. Now that you’re a grownup (or becoming one), how far off was your idea of adult life?

 

Today, I have made it to the age of 26.  I never thought I would live this long.  I never thought I would make it past high school to be honest.  Depression plagued me.  Suicidal thoughts invaded my brain from the time I was 11.  I didn’t necessarily think I would take my own life, but I sincerely thought I would be dead before I ever reached the legal age of adulthood – the legal age to buy a cigarette or a few years later when I could drink my problems and thoughts down with alcohol.

I created a fantasy world for those around me of what my life as an adult would be.  Never for myself though. I never believed it.  My world as an adult was created to please my parents, my teachers, and my friends.  I created wild dreams of what I would be and who I would become.  I pediatric oncologist!  I saw Patch Adams and loved the movie – yes I would follow in his footsteps.  I would make kids smile, I would create my own free clinic to help those in need.  I would get amazing scholarships so no one would have to pay for my school. 

I told everyone!!!  Yes, I am going to be a doctor.  Not just any doctor. I want to be an oncologist.  A pediatric oncologist!  I am going to make kid smile.  “Won’t that be sad?” they asked.  “Well, yes. Sometimes.  But you have to look at all the lives I will save!” I would tell them.  I knew none of it would ever happen.  I would never have to prove any of this to them.  This was all a fantasy, I would never be an adult. I would never live to have to actually do any of this. 

Mental illness is a horrible thing.  It distorts your views.  I did grow up.  I did take AP classes in high school.  I did get amazing grades despite my awful suicidal thoughts and severe depression.  I went to college.  I majored in nursing.  I barely got through my last 2 years as I was hospitalized for psychiatric reason 8-10 times during those last 1.5 years.   But I had amazing grades, and I did receive my RN.  I had a nurse fellowship at a outpatient oncology clinic. I loved it.  It did seem to be my calling.  Mental illness is something I struggle with though.  I don’t practice as a nurse right now.  I know it is something that is too overwhelming for me and something that I cannot do at this time.  It is still part of my childhood fantasy – something that I created for others, not for myself. 

I am alive though.  That is pretty far off from what my childhood view was of my adult life.  My biggest view during childhood was that I would be dead. Here I am though, in the flesh, alive – heart beating, mind thinking.  Totally opposite!