We need to keep talking about suicide, mental health care, and keeping an eye on each other. A thread… 1/12
So I’ve been dealing with all kinds of assignments, reading, midterms, preaching gigs and even a couple of weddings in the last two weeks. Really good stuff - well except for the midterms. Who knew there was so much history in seminary?! 2/12
I was on my way to an appointment last Friday when I got a message that a really good therapist had died. Weird. My first thought was that is was a mix up. Brilliant young therapist. 3/12
We referred to each other a lot - and this honestly was pretty flattering coming from him because he is just so gifted in this work. 4/12
I sent out some texts and shortly it was confirmed. Suicide. 32 years old. He was so skilled. Especially marital therapy. Marital therapy is so hard. But he was so good. Authentic. Kind. Curious. Accepting. 5/12
He supervised one of my clients to help her get ready to take her boards. She came in yesterday. Utterly broken. She feels so guilty that she never saw what he was going through. A dear friend was seeing him for therapy. She’s incredibly sad. 6/12
A former colleague worked with him and she is trying to get all his current clients placed. I cannot imagine how she is providing services and support to all these shocked, grieving people who were on a path to mental health. 7/12
I have no idea what happened to his thinking. I wish I did because the world is less now because he is gone. Mental health care in the rural Midwest will suffer because his gifts and skills are gone. 8/12
I have two adolescent clients right now who are struggling. Bright, beautiful young people with a wide open future before them. But they have something in common. They have parents who are struggling and unable or willing to address their own mental health problems. 9/12
This creates a situation in which the children start parenting the adults and the adults continue not to do well. Now the children begin the consider the hopelessness of it all and suicide becomes a viable option. 10/12
And this cycle of pain and loss keeps swirling. 11/12
Please take care of each other. Love your people. Be active with self care. If you ever need a shoulder, an ear, hope, a hug; I’m here. We need to be here for each other. 13/12

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