WMUR just came out with a report that suicide rates are increasing in NH on the same morning that we heard of Anthony Bordain's apparent suicide and in the same week that Kate Spade took her own life. 

What is going on here?  Both Anthony Bordain and Kate Spade had teenage daughters, so why would they do such a thing?  It is so very hard to understand, but this is my experience with the disease of depression that may shed a little light on the dark.

I will admit to you, dear blog reader, that I, myself, the person that some refer to as a ray of sunshine, had been diagnosed with clinical depression at one point in my life.  All I did was cry.  About everything.  About nothing.  I had thoughts I never thought I would have.  Sometimes, the laughter and the smiles are a mask for the pain that lies underneath.

I knew something was drastically wrong, so I did go for counseling, but for me, I'm not sure that was a cure all.  For me, counseling in the traditional sense was embarrassing and people like me aren't supposed to get depressed, so what was I doing?  I absolutely hate bringing people down, but I was paying them, so that made it easier, as it was their job to listen.  After a while, I stopped going, but I know now that the thoughts of absolute worthlessness I was having was because of the depression and not because of who I really am.

My life is very different now.  I understand on a very physiological level what is going on in my brain and I give myself so much more of a break that I used to.  When those thoughts come up from time to time, I stop and ask why it might be happening?  Am I hungry?  (seriously...)  Am I over-tired?  Am I overwhelmed?  Is something or someone hurting my feelings?  Did someone close to me get sick/die?  If the answer is yes to one of these questions, then I give myself a break and let the sadness come.  If nothing is wrong, I make a phone call to the counselor.  It really does help.  Sometimes, he'll say, "Jesus, Sullivan, you need to talk to me AGAIN?"  (Humor is a HUGE coping mechanism)

 

In my opinion, people who commit suicide are overwhelmed by pain.  They just want to be free of it, period, the end.  They have no intention of inflicting more hurt on anyone.  We should all make an effort to help each other with this overwhelming disease.

Be kind to one another and don't let this thing get you!  You fight!  You've got a lot to live for that you don't even know about yet.

Much love to you.