Commentary on Robin Williams’s death and mental illness.

English: Robin Williams, U.S. actor, at the 20...

English: Robin Williams, U.S. actor, at the 2008 BBC World Debate. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The passing of Robin Williams is indeed a tragic event. What makes it worse is that it was a death that may well have been preventable. While to the best of my knowledge authorities have NOT confirmed suicide as the cause of death, it is well known that Williams suffered from severe depression.

Many of my friends (and myself included) have suffered from depression at some point. And a few of us have even contemplated suicide at some point in our lives. Depression is not something you just “push through.” It is not something you just “gotta get over” or as my mom would have put it “something you just buck up and deal with.” It is as much a disease as the flu and cancer are, and should be treated as such.

The stigma that mental disease is stupid or crap or just something you have to “Happy yourself” over needs to go away. Perhaps if it never existed, Robin Williams would still be with us today.

* If you are suffering from depression, there is help for you. Talk with your friends. If your friends can’t help, then family. If family won’t help, then find someone who will. It could be a therapist, a priest, rabbi, or hell, a bartender. Just SOMEONE who will listen.
* If you know someone with depression, do everything you can to help them. You’d help them if they fell or got hurt physically, right?
* If you or someone you know has expressed an intention to kill themselves, TELL SOMEONE, or call the police.

Requiescant In Pace, Robin Williams. Nunc tandem ad pacem.

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