On Depression and Suicide


I’ll make this short and not so sweet.

There has been a lot of media attention lately on depression and suicide.   Mainly because those people were “celebrities.”  People who seemingly had everything.

The public is shocked.  How could such a thing happen?

It is really quite simple.

They were suffering from depression.  Clinical depression.  A disease.  Just like heart disease.  Diabetes.  Cancer.

Sadness that is beyond control.  Even to “normal” people who are not celebrities.  People who have families.  Good lives.  Good jobs.  Everything to live for.

But they can’t.  They don’t.

So if you are one of those people, the ones who spout clichés like “they just need to man-up” or “life is tough, get over it,” or “they just need more Jesus and less Prozac,”  please be advised.

You are ignorant.  Stupid.  A total, complete, uninformed, unmitigated jack-ass.

Take a little advice from an Alabama hillbilly.  Shut your trap, and be grateful to God Almighty that you never have seen depression or suicide up-close.  In a friend.  A loved-one.  A spouse.  Your child.  Or maybe even yourself.

Consider yourself blessed.

Consider yourself warned.

20 thoughts on “On Depression and Suicide

    1. Well, I “don’t know.” Seems you have some close familiarity with this issue.

      My father once had clinical depression, which only ended with medication. He fell into it after his father died. I was many hundreds of miles away at the time, so did not see it directly, but my mother told me that he was basically inert, couldn’t do anything. Seems it can be resolved with medication. Problem is you have to take the medication.

      1. Ray, I’ve had most of the day to think on this topic of the latest in the news. I’ve not been exposed to suicide in either family or friends; I’m fortunate and I realize it. So when I read this news, yes, I feel saddened by it and ask myself how did it get so bad that this person turned to death as a release? I think about the method of how it was planned and maybe even rehearsed and then carried forth as the final act. But what really bothers me is the depth of their pain and suffering of something in their lives that moves them to commit this action. I know of a situation in a large city where a married couple agreed to their own death pact of suicide and carried it out successfully. It was orchestrated to the dotted I. The newspapers covered this story for well over 3 years as this was a prominent couple; movers and shakers of a community. Through this story I gained a small bit of insight to how and why. What’s often manifested are fractured relationships, guilt, questions, guesses and mostly such immense pain that I’m sure it’s possible that who’s left behind may think of doing the very same action. Nobody wins. I sense you’ve had direct contact with this very subject whether it be clinical depression or even worse, the act of suicide by a loved one. I’m very sorry if this is so. I’m already looking foreward to one of your uplifting, woodsy writings in the near future to turn my thoughts away from all this sadness of loss.

      2. Leisa, I’ve seen both seen an anxiety disorder and/or clinical depression close. I’ve read that a large majority of these people recover after a few months of medication and therapy. Others do not. I wrote abut those who do not. They “manage” it to try and function in everyday life, but it will never go away.

        Suicide is a different matter. Families are the ones who suffer.

        As you know, I normally don’t write about serious topics. What prompted this piece was a comment on another social media site. My response to that idiot was not something I’d write on a “family” blog.

  1. Read this early this morning and thought of how often I have not had enough understand on the subject in general. I had one experience that still haunts me. Several years ago a neighbor came to visit me. He brought his Alaskan husky with him .

    As we sat in the backyard 3 or 4 time he kept telling me he wanted me to have his dog. I knew how much he loved the animal and I thanked but said he is yours.

    Less than a week later this gentleman was found shot to death in his home. Circumstance were never made too public and rumors varied. One was he shot himself and the other rumor was it was a robbery. His family took the dog but it bothered me why did he want me to take the dog? I was raised with a comment of just get over it dealing with melancholy moods with in my family. You shed new light on to awareness.

    1. That’s a sad story. I suspect your neighbor liked you enough that he knew you would take care of his dog.

      Families have a very hard time dealing with suicide. Sometimes they are embarrassed or ashamed. They make-up stories like “it was an accident” or “it might have been a robbery.”

      As a young man, I would have said “so you are sad, just over it.” But now I know different because I have seen it. Most of the people I know who suffer from depression would give anything to be able to “get over it.” But they cannot because it is a disease. Sometimes medication helps, sometimes it doesn’t. These are the ones who often commit suicide.

  2. Very well put. No one knows what it’s like until they put their feet in those shoes. Watching it in a close loved one is a daily tearing at the heartstrings.

  3. Fight it every day. Years ago they put me on medication that just made it worse, went to a phycologist, talked to him for about 3 months, found ways to deal with the oncoming feelings and how to cope. Takes time and understanding what brings it on, its like a cloud, you can feel it slowly moving over you, then you kickin the mechanizims that get you through the day, and then the next, then the next. Suicide? Hell yeah, been there a few times, but, one of the ways to overcome is to climb on the bike and go visit nature, and take the time to stop and enjoy the world that is out there, Sometimes it takes a lot, just to get dressed and get to the bike.

    1. Thanks, Bob. I know exactly what you are talking about. I have some strategies as well.

      It’s almost as bad (almost worse) to see a friend or family member try to dig-out of that black hole.

      I know one damn thing. You can’t tell them to man-up or cheer-up. If they could they would.

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