-“Doctor…He never said anything to us…He didn’t even leave a suicide note!”
Pamela X. is an attractive middle aged housewife from the Gables—one of the posh quarters of Dade County with leafy boulevards and large houses with two or three car-garages—that cannot come to terms that one totally ordinary Saturday morning her son Mark put the barrel of his father’s hunting rifle in his mouth and pulled the trigger.
He was a handsome and affable teenager that was supposedly enjoying his studies, basketball practices, outings with friends and his Netflix series. He never touched any alcohol or illegal drugs, boasting of his clean lifestyle. He did not talk much but his parents assumed that he was taciturn by nature and low profile by choice. Just listening to his mother’s tortured verbal rumblings can sear your heart with unfathomable pain.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention claims that 42,773 Americans die by suicide each year, being the 10th leading cause of death. The annual age-adjusted suicide rate is 12.93 per 100,000 individuals and men die 3.5 times more often than women; there are 117 suicides per day. Even though it is more frequent in middle-aged males, young people attempt it 25 times for each successful feat compared to about 4 times in the elderly.
Since the times of Saint Augustine, suicide has been considered a mortal sin for the Christian ethos—a condemnation that would eventually taint all the victim’s family. Emile Durkheim, a French sociologist of the 19th century, considered suicide as an objective evidence of the malaise of the society where it had happened. He divided them in three categories: selfish, altruistic and without a name.
Marzio Barbagli, a sociology professor at the Università di Bologna, says that “the processes of social breakdown were not the only cause, let alone the main factor underlying the rise in suicide numbers up until the early 20th century…Suicide depends on many psychosocial, cultural, political and even biological causes…It must be analyzed from different points of view.”
What caused a young person like Mark, with a bright future ahead, to terminate his life?
What do you think? Please tell us.
Don’t leave me alone.
10 thoughts on “The gone son”
The fact that 42,773 Americans die by suicide each year really shocked me.
I’m currently writing multiple blogs about the disintegration of Yugoslavia and came across the data that 16,620 people took their own life in the war-torn 90s. (1 year vs. 10)
Those are tragic numbers. Where you born in Yugosñavia? Where? Croatia? I’m guessing based on your leanings about Catholic dogma on sin and sinners..
Haha, no, not a Catholic, that was a joke. Serbia, an Orthodox Christian by tradition only. An atheist, really.
I forgot to tell you: feel free to re-blog any of my articles for your distinguished readership. I’d like to ask you permission to do the same in my page please.
Before the thought of suicide comes in our mind, we should introspect about the purpose of our life on this planet. This life of ours is due to the grace of our Lord. In life is not merely the bed of roses only. Even roses have thorns in its branches, similar is our life. Problems are the thorns which prick us but there is also the fragrance of the roses too. We’ve to have a complete balance between the two. Those who aspire only for roses, fall prey to the idea of cutting short their lives but without realizing that the next birth (if one believes in incarnation) the same reel of events will be repeated; then what? Suicide is not the end of problems but the beginning of the start of the same rut. Weak hearts should think that after leaving suddenly this earth, they would be leaving their loved ones in disarray and in despondency for their entire lives. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
I couldn’t agree more Harbans. That poor lady was left in a state of total, irremediable despair due tonher son’s secret decision. I don’t believe in reincarnation but as a practicing Catholic I lay my destiny in the hands of God Almighty. Thanks forvthe grsat spiritual commentary. I meant to ask you: are you a Brahmin or a religious functionnary in India?
I’m really impressed by the richness of your write -ups on various topics. Indeed interesting and helpful. . Our Creator is the controller of our destinies but is Commandments too when we fall prey into the pit which we dig for our own selves without realizing our fallacies. Although I am Brahmin by caste yet I hardly give more credence to religion or caste factors. I do know that we’ve a common GOD and He keeps our remote control in His hands. I am not a religious functionary at all. I served in defence forces and now am serving in one of the eduational institutions. I on varieties of topics including religion but my spiritual thoughts are not based on narrow hykneyed ones.
Thanks for the nice compliment.
I think i am will be leaving you alone on this one…but to me suicide is a very selfish act i don’t care what the cause might be.
Dear Uc: good evening and thank you for the commentary. I agree with you that it’s a very selfish act but the crucial point is: why such a privileged young man chose that desperate path without even giving a hint to their parents?