Monday, 30 November 2009

Why is it so difficult to talk about suicide?

Just found out that one of the kids at school committed suicide. It is a tragedy like no other and makes my stomach churn. My heart goes out to all those who knew this kid, the parents, siblings, friends and teachers.

What I don't understand is why it is so difficult to talk about suicide. None of the information available mentions how this teenager died, yet we all wonder. I felt the need to have an answer, perhaps because it gives me an idea of what happens to teenagers, what risks and dangers they face and what my children may one way face.

A quick search on the net gave me the answer. There is always someone out there making things public, so why can't the school? They are going to have a memorial at school later in the week. They are going to tell our first graders that a student died, so why is it so hard to tell us parents how it happened? Why is it not mentioned on the intranet in any way or form? Don't we need to be able to answer, or at least try to answer our children's questions. Won't there be "rumors" around the school anyway. Let's hope the little kids are not touched by the unofficial sharing of information....

It is a subject that goes straight to my heart, and one that I wrote about just over a year ago. Funnily enough Makaila and I had a chat about suicide just a few days ago. We discussed why it is ok to put a cat to sleep but not a person, but why a person, namely my father, might choose to take matters into their own hands. It's tough for her to understand. But then as I told her, it is just as hard for me to understand, even now, 28 years later.

Suicide is something we should be talking about, whether we understand it or not. It should not be happening and I hardly dare to contemplate what each person must go through before making such a final decision. And I don't need to contemplate what it is like for the family left behind. It is earth-shattering.

Once again the subject comes to my attention and I went searching the net to see who and what is around. It is disturbing to see, yet heartening to know that there are people out there spreading the word - sufferers: mothers, sisters and more.

Here are some valuable suicide links:

Ludmilla - a Swedish mother who lost her 14 yr old daughter. I look at the photos and imagine what the grief must be like. Incredible that she can turn it into something positive.

Two big sisters who lost their brother - fantastic resource with lots of Swedish information, blog and a forum. Inspirational girls doing something really fantastic.

10 common myths about suicide - excellent reading and everyone should take the time to do so.

SPES - Sweden's suicide prevention and support for the survivors of suicide. A brilliant and very valuable resource.

Spread the word, don't let suicide be the subject no-one talks about. Because no matter how much we pretend it doesn't exist, no matter how much we ignore it, it is not going to go away anytime soon.

Rest In Peace dear girl. My thought are with you and your loved ones.

1 comment:

  1. People shy away from that which makes them uncomfortable. There were a couple of suicides recently at a school in I think it was Geelong, Channel 9 or 7 did a story about one of the suicides - the family of the teenager wanted it to be shown, but the government had it pulled.
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