First a man from a reality TV show commits suicide, and now Anderson Cooper is talking about his brother’s suicide on a syndicated talk show. There’s not a link, these two examples just happen to be in the news at the same time. Publicly discussing these things helps to reduce the stigma against death by suicide (which is sometimes hidden from even family) as well as raise awareness of mental illness in general (it can strike anyone, etc). This interview with Anderson Cooper & his mother is especially emotional and affecting because it is personal – this is Anderson Cooper’s brother (Anderson Cooper!), and Gloria Vanderbilt (wiki her, she’s amazingly…strong). Read the link/watch the video for context. Here’s what she says,
“There is this word ‘closure’ that they talk spoke so much about today, but there’s never closure on something that happens like that,” explained Vanderbilt. “You can never get over it but you learn to live with it.”
My mother told me that your life changes when you have a child. Which is obvious, but really, its like you can never go back – unlike practically any other event in your life, apart from the death of someone you love. A family who is close to my family lost a son to suicide a few years ago. They have become activists and speak at conferences and stuff. They say, “We have four children, one of whom is deceased.” Its not always the time and place to share the details, its personal – but its also emotional for them.