By Terry Cornick (Mr. Perfect Founder & CEO)
A brother of a friend of a friend took their own life on Anzac Day. I heard only today and typed this out within minutes of the news on the bus to work.
Without knowing any details or knowing the guy, what I do know is that he was "that guy".
The one that had it together, a secure job that was booming, he was charming, had a massive smile and had just bought a boat. Sound familiar? Some would say this was "perfect".
Without even knowing his mindset or if he had any history of or current mental illness, I pondered deeply when I heard.
I felt sick to the stomach but truly angry. Angry that we have lost another male, a brother, dad, grandfather, a role model perhaps.
But I also honestly felt angry preempting the seemingly innocent response from those around that cannot comprehend it, the "I didn't see it coming" or "but he had the ideal life" types. These scenarios if you had not already noticed, provoke an emotive jolt in me.
It is all about understanding. "Awareness" of this sort of situation does stop it. Talking about it does not stop it. It's too late.
We all wish we had the answer. But I felt the need to try offer the tiniest insight into what he may have felt.
When seemingly small incidents, arguments, setbacks happen, they can quickly spiral in my mind at times. Whether it's alcohol or caffeine or similar that amplifies them, I know these indulgences do not help.
But there have been hundreds of times, with and without enhancers, where my mind has jumped from step 1 to step 10 so quickly.
They used to be more intense, and admittedly close to suicide on a handful of occasions in the past. They still happen now but more often than not they are just deeply uncomfortable and rise quicker, but subside quickly too once I have returned to "reality". It's something I work on with my Doctors consistently.
I am trying desperately to put myself back in that mindset to understand as best I can. The type where that anxiety and distress rises sharply from a trigger and in that heightened state you physically cannot see past that dark wall that is closing in to crush you. There is only one true escape.
None of the above is a professional opinion or even pretending to "know" what exactly "it" is.
The truth I know is that a crisis is different for everyone. The truth I suspect (with zero medical knowledge) is that different people have different trigger points, different sensitivities that cause different reactions. To label it or box it up can be fruitless and in reality can anyone prevent these particular occurrences?
I also suspect without researching there is more Science than we know behind this and right now people are working on it across the world. If you are one of them please feel free to get in touch. I would love to understand it just 1% more. And I can imagine those that have not suffered from mental illness feel even more in the dark.