Teen Suicide

Last weekend, a young man from my daughter's high school killed himself. It was announced on Monday morning by teachers in a certain period so everyone could hear at the same time. Even though they couldn't mention his name or how he died, the news still spread fast. His girlfriend goes to the same school so it was easy to figure out who it was.

My daughter hasn't had him in a class since 9th grade but when they were in 8th, they shared two classes. He became the second boy she had a crush on and on the last day of school, he obliged her with a picture. Just look at her happy face! She has this picture framed in her room still. She loves dark haired boys with smokey eyes ;-)

That's the only way we know him, never knew him personally. But by the remarks left on his Facebook wall, he was well liked and is missed terribly. You can't help but get tears in your eyes when you read all the sadness. And then you start to wonder why. Why? And it's the one question that will never probably be answered. Was he bullied? How was his home life? Was it untreated depression? Why young man? So many people want to know, need to know.

It's hard to admit but I've struggled with depression since I was a teen and many times, even through adulthood I've thought it would just be so much easier to end it all. Those are dark and dismal days that seem to go on forever. My parents sent me to a counselor...once. I guess they thought once was enough and I was cured. My mom said once that people that try to kill themselves are just looking for attention. Well....duh. It's called a 'cry for help', and sometimes people listen and sometimes they don't. And in other cases, sometimes it comes as a complete surprise, which could be the case with this young man.

It's been a rough week, I can feel the pall of sadness that covers the school across the street. And as I sit in my chair and watch kids walk by, they seem to walk slower with their heads down. Or maybe it's just me and how I'm feeling about it all. I find myself getting choked up several times a day and am not really sure why. I had nothing personal vested in this young man's existence. We were not besties. I'm not even a friend of a friend of a friend. But still I cry, everyday. Maybe it's just the mother in me that feels the fear of, 'what if that happened to my daughter?' Or maybe it's the former (and sometimes still) depressed teen that gets it and realizes how easy it could be to end it all and just wishing he could have hung in there a little longer.

There has been a flagpole raising at school, a community service group started by students in his name, a scheduled get together in a local park of just students who want to remember him (over 200 have accepted the invitations), and of course the memorial service itself. All of these events other than the family memorial service were started by students that loved him. If I ever feel disparaging thoughts about teens again, I will have to remind myself of this place in time.

Yesterday my daughter and I went to the service. The place was packed with family, friends, teachers and fellow Sea Cadets. It was a beautiful service with an inspiring message, awesome video montage and stories from friends and family who made us laugh and cry.

Everyone was told to wear green, his favorite color and after the service, hundreds of green balloons were released. I will never look at a green balloon in the same way. It was probably the saddest and most emotional day I have had in years. No 16 year old kid should have to go to another 16 year old kids funeral, it's just not right.

Rest In Paradise young man
I think I will be taking some time off from blogging for awhile. I need to regroup and it just seems so inappropriate to be complaining about anything right now. Thanks for understanding.


V said…
This is really sad news. The boy looks gorgeous in that photo. I've been suffering from depression since I was a kid too. I feel disgusted when people say that those who try to kill themselves are just attention seekers.
NJ said…
How very sad. I had a very good friend do the same thing this summer. Not a child but an adult. It was not expected and everyone was so shocked. We all knew he was upset that his wife had left him and that they wouldn't be reconciling but no one thought he would do this. He looked after everyone. He was the property manager at our work for many years and had recently come to our department. My personal thoughts are that the changes in his life were more than he could handle and he had a really bad moment where he made the wrong decision. His daughter was to be married a month later. He drove across Canada just to replace her roof last year. His funeral was packed as well. He's missed greatly at work. And it seems like almost everyday we talk about him whether it's about what happened or to tell a funny story about him. He was such a great prankster and joker.
fernvalley01 said…
What a handsome young man . So sad when a child is lost in any way ,so much worse when he has gone to such a dark place in his mind that he fet there was no better way. Prayers for his family and yours for healing and peace
bill said…
Tragic event leaving those who loved him and knew him to mourn and wonder why.

Take care of yourself, Kden. Find a way to boost your mental capacity out of depression if you can. Life is too big to understand everything. We are left too often, unknowing. You've got a family and they no doubt depend on you and that's something to think about.

Then get back to us when you can. I'll sending good thoughts your way.
Grumpy said…
Just a terrible thing to have happen. My senior year in high school one classmate killed himself and another did the same just days into his freshman year in college.

Just be sure to hug your daughter every day.
Breathe said…
It's frightening to me that someone would be so out of touch with the power of emotions to think suicide is attention seeking. But gives one a glimpse into the challenges of being a sensitive soul.

I hope you can find a place of healing, live tomorrow fully in honor of one who couldn't see around life's dark corner.

Thinking of you.
Claire King said…
So sorry to hear of this tragedy. I have Known of this circumstance more than once in my life, and my kids have lost a few friends to death in horrible accidents and a shooting. It is soooooo sad, no matter what. Cry with your daughter when she needs it.
Mr. Shife said…
Wow. What sad news and so very to hear about the loss of a seemingly wonderful young man. I hope he found the peace he was looking for, and I also hope the ones he left behind can find the same peace. Hugs and warm wishes to all those who need it. I don't know what else to say but thank you for sharing this with everyone, and take care of yourself.
kden said…
Thanks everyone for stopping by with your kind words. I'll be back, next Sunday, the 16th.

You all mean an awful lot to me ♥

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