Watching this morning’s news conference about the suicide of Robin Williams was just sad. I agree with his wife that I hope we will remember his life and work more than his death. Except for one thing.
Depression is an illness. It can be difficult to treat, pernicious in its ability to distort reality and destroy the soul. If you or anyone you love has the symptoms, get help immediately. If you’ve been successfully treated for depression in the past, but the symptoms return, get help immediately. There are hotlines in most major metropolitan areas, numbers you can call if you don’t know where to go–including suicide hotlines. People with a mental illness like depression can feel isolated and alone, but there is always someone out there willing to help.
It seems so sad that Williams, someone who was no stranger to asking for help, didn’t feel like he had that option this time. His brilliance was fueled by a deep despair, and I’m sure celebrity and fame just added to his emotional burdens. I cannot imagine what he was thinking or feeling, but I hope that others out there who might be feeling the same way don’t ever forget that they have friends. Even if those friends are perfect strangers.