Oh what a sad day, chef and author Anthony Bourdain has passed at 61 of an apparent suicide, details forthcoming I suppose. One of my favorites on the food channels through the years ............ RIP Tony
This post on FB today by a musician, writer and Joe's friend: never heard anybody say it better:
" - When somebody is born with a congenital heart defect, and then dies of the symptoms of that defect, people tend to not judge them. Yet, when somebody is born with a congenital defect in their brain, and they die from symptoms of mental illness, there sure seem to be a lot of judgment going on whenever it happens. I say that because chronic depression basically is a congenital defect that causes the brain to have underdeveloped functions, or have an inability to produce the proper chemistry needed for people to not be depressed.
Unfortunately, since everybody has experienced some type of depression at some point in their life, many people seem to feel they are qualified to weigh in on how a person with chronic depression should deal with their situation. It’s tantamount to me telling a diabetic how they should really be experiencing their illness, because I have occasional bouts of low blood sugar.
I hate that I have to share this all again, because there’s a lot of uninformed judgment being spewed, but here we go: Suicidal depression is a symptom of chronic depression. It’s also considered to be a form of psychosis. Having suffered through severe bouts of this illness several times in my life, which have required a few hospitalizations, I can attest firsthand to the idea that one is in a state of psychosis, and in certain moments when the pain of existing is so unbelievable that breathing in and out hurts down to the core of your soul, there is not a sane thought in your head. The only thing you know is that you are experiencing psychic, soul crushing pain on a level that seems unsurvivable. That’s not reality, but you don’t know that, because something is so broken with your brain at that moment, it’s the only reality you know.
Think about it like a heart attack for your brain. Thoughts of children, wives, parents, friends, whatever, cannot pierce that pain in those moments. But unless you’ve been there and have been lucky enough to survive one of these episodes, it’s apparently too easy to call somebody who did not survive “selfish,” or what not. Maybe it makes you feel great to let everybody know how morally superior you are, but actually, you’re doing a disservice to people that have to experience the reality of suicidal depression.
So, unless you have firsthand knowledge of that situation, or are an accredited mental health professional, and you feel like offering anything other than sympathy for the people left behind, maybe you should just shut the #### up, because all you really have to offer is an uninformed opinion without the experience to back it up.
And if you are experiencing suicidal ideation, please get help from a qualified mental health professional. You can seem OK for 23 hours of the day, and then there’s just that one hour where that darkness kicks in, and all it takes is one wrong move to not make it out of that hour. I know this, because I’ve had those close calls.
Depression is one of the most treatable forms of mental illness, despite being the deadliest. They have made so many advancements in its treatment, even since I was first diagnosed at age 9. My quality of life is so drastically different, but it takes management and effort. You are absolutely worth a life free from that type of pain, and one that includes joy. Never let somebody’s uninformed judgment make you feel ashamed of your experience, or keep you from getting help."