A young lady's suicide

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A young lady's suicide

Post by Weetabix » Tue Oct 18, 2016 3:00 pm

There's a coffee shop in the first floor of my building. It's a bit more expensive than others nearby, but several things take me there each day. The coffee is no better than anywhere else, but it supports my building, it saves me a bit of time, and the baristas are generally more fun to talk to than the other places.

One of them was a young lady named Emily. She was a delightful girl the same age as my middle daughter. She went to school for interior design and shared my same geeky interest in old drafting implements. I don't particularly like mornings, but she was a bright spot in them. Friendly. Seemed happy.

She took her own life this weekend.

This is hitting me harder than... what? It's not something you really consider ahead of time to think how it would hit you. So, harder than I would have expected? Without expecting it?

Her boss told me this morning, I think because she knew that Emily and I chatted a lot. Boss said, she never saw anything to alert her that this could even be a possibility. Obviously, I had much less interaction with her, but I didn't either. Emily's boyfriend found her, and apparently, he had no clue either.

This kind of thing never makes sense, but even less here. She always seemed happy. Thinking back, her eyes seemed happy, so it doesn't seem like she was hiding unhappiness. Or maybe she was just really good at it.

Thinking about it, I guess it hits me so hard because a) she's my daughter's age, and b) if someone put 20 people in front of me and said, "Guess who's going to commit suicide," she'd have been at the bottom of the list.

This sucks for everyone left. Boss tells me that her family had no idea and is obviously taking it hard. The boyfriend is devastated. Boss looks like a wreck. And the worst part of it is, had anyone known, she was such a great kid, she'd have had support from probably everyone.

This isn't a rant. Maybe some form of venting? I don't know. Just getting it off my chest, I guess.
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Re: A young lady's suicide

Post by PawPaw » Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:29 pm

Sometimes you need to get things off of your chest. A young person's suicide is always baffling, saddening, mournful. It helps to mourn.

Years ago my son had a friend, we'll call him Michael. The two of them virtually grew up together, all through school. They played together, studied together, worked together. I think that they even shared an apartment for a while.

At the time, we lived in the country. Way out in the deep, rural, Louisiana landscape. I didn't lock my doors on the house, I trusted my neighbors and they trusted me. It was really an idyllic place and time.

One day I came home to find a shotgun on my front porch. An old Remington Model 11, a family heirloom. It had been kept in the unlocked gun cabinet in the living room, and I was particularly concerned when I found it on the front porch. I queried my sons about it, and they claimed that they had no idea how it had gotten from the cabinet, on to the front porch. It was a genuine mystery. A neighbor told me the next day she had seen Michael's truck at the house during the day. We thought that was curious, but no big deal. Micheal was a trusted friend. During this time the boys were about 19 year s old.

A week later, Michael killed himself with his dad's shotgun. From all accounts he went outside and did the deed.

All I could figure was that Michael used our shotgun to practice the deed, to take the mystery out of the process. I never put two-and-two together until after Michael was dead, and I never told my sons that I thought he had practiced with our shotgun. Some things are better left unsaid.
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Re: A young lady's suicide

Post by Weetabix » Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:58 pm

PawPaw wrote:A young person's suicide is always baffling, saddening, mournful.
I think those are the words I was looking for.

I'll be talking to my kids about this. I remember (vaguely) that as a young man, my problems seemed huge because I'd seen so little at that time. Everything passed, as it does. I'll be telling them that, and that they should always find someone to talk to even if it's not me or my wife. I don't think I have any worries on that head, but I always figure some things need to be said, even if there doesn't seem an immediate need.
All I could figure was that Michael used our shotgun to practice the deed, to take the mystery out of the process. I never put two-and-two together until after Michael was dead, and I never told my sons that I thought he had practiced with our shotgun. Some things are better left unsaid.
I'm really sorry to hear about that, too. I think you did the right things not telling your sons.
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Re: A young lady's suicide

Post by slowpoke » Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:46 pm

The majority of female suicides are attempts that accidently succeeds. They're a cry for help really. Then there are those like a friend of mine freshman year highschool who tried several times until she got it right. If they really want to no amount of help can stop it. Also reminded how antidepressent drugs increase suicide. They get past the too depressed for action but not enough to actually feel good.

My condolensces on the friend.
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Re: A young lady's suicide

Post by Jericho941 » Wed Oct 19, 2016 8:16 am

Well, psychologists will tell you that every attempt is a cry for help, regardless of age or gender. IIRC, they came to the conclusion after interviewing people who made very serious attempts and survived, e.g. jumping of the Golden Gate bridge. It's an impulse decision, and in the process they usually realize they shouldn't have, provided their method allowed enough time for regret. It's a combination of being absolutely overwhelmed and not seeing any other way out.

It doesn't help if you don't think you can talk to someone. A lot of the "but they seemed so happy" cases likely are people who felt they didn't have anyone they could talk to about what was bothering them, and didn't want to burden anyone. That's part of why I object a little to calling suicide a selfish act: it is, but there's usually a warped concern for others built into it. A depressed son tells his parents he doesn't feel like he's any good and everyone would be better off if he was dead, and he gets an angry "don't talk crazy like that, you scare your mother." He quickly learns that there is no help to be had, he has to fend for himself against his demons, and before too long, he finds a way to stop being a burden to everyone. There is relief and liberation in deciding to kill oneself, which is why anyone who seems to suddenly brighten up from depression should be watched like a hawk. Hollywood hysterics are not the norm.

The irony is that suicide leaves a bigger burden on those left behind than the victim imagined. Everyone left behind wonders why, what they did or didn't do about it. Could they have done anything about it? Should they? Would they? Surely we would... if only we'd known... right?

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Re: A young lady's suicide

Post by evan price » Thu Oct 20, 2016 9:57 am

Once upon a time i was working a second job at an auto parts store to help pay for college which Was taking ten years at my pay. We hired this kid in high school as a night stocker. Nice guy, I'll call him George. Was restoring an old mustang.
Homecoming night he went to a party at another high schoolers home. The usual expected thing happens, there is alcohol. Parents supervise but supply booze. This was a while ago.
So George knows he should not be driving. He rides home with a friend...let's call him Cory. Cory seems cool. However Cory is just as drunk but he is better at concealing it. Cory had a 5-litre mustang gt. The party was in a rural area with windy two lane 55 mph speed limit roads through the trees. On a gentle left hand curve posted at 45 mph (which i had safely negotiated in a station wagon at 70) Cory drifts off onto the right gravel shoulder at a high speed estimated over 100 mph. He then over corrects the recovery and cuts too hard as he does back into the roadway and throws the car into snap oversteer. The car spins and slides off the inside of the curve backwards striking trees. The passenger door latch fails and comes open and the unbelted passenger is thrown from the seat. George impacts face first into an oak tree. The first responder to the scene described that George's teeth were embedded in the tree. George is unrecognizable from facial trauma.
George suffers massive head trauma and brain injury. He survived the crash and is transported to hospital. Doctors determine that his forebrain is severely damaged. George remains in a vegetative state on life support fit several days until his parents decide to discontinue and he dies.

What does this have to do with suicide?

Cory, who before the accident had been a popular and pleasant kid with a great future and high grades turns into an introverted angry young man with failing grades and a bad case of survivors guilt. His injuries from the crash were not very severe, cuts and bruises mostly, and he heals. Friends describe that Cory constantly talked about how it should have been him that died and not George.

On the anniversary of the accident he drives his mother's car to the curve in the road, walks into the woods to where the car crashed and uses his father's shotgun to blow his head off.

And two promising young men lost their lives from bad choices.
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Re: A young lady's suicide

Post by Precision » Mon Oct 24, 2016 11:34 pm

When my wife was first diagnosed with cancer - coupled with losing her job, losing her marriage, having her savings stolen... and other things. She debated with herself about killing herself. Two major things stopped her. Some one once told her in relation to her uncle's suicide, it is a permanent solution to a temporary problem and she had a son who would find her body. So she scraped herself of the proverbial floor and worked on figuring out a solution.

That solution eventually turned out to be calling me for help with her son. Which for brevity's sake led to us getting back together and both of us having the relationship we had always dreamed of. From the point of considering suicide to our marriage was less then 2 years. From her lowest low to her highest high, two years. That is a sobering, enlightening and hopefully encouraging to any who stare at that particular oblivion.
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