Tim Gunn admits he once attempted suicide in a PSA for the Trevor Project—a hotline for LGBT and questioning youth. “As a 17-year-old youth who was in quite a bit of despair, I attempted to kill myself,” he confesses. “When I woke up the next morning after taking more than 100 pills, I was in a whole other level of despair. I thought, ‘I shouldn’t be here. This isn’t what was meant to be.’” His message is that “it gets better” and “you can’t do this alone.” It certainly got better for Tim. He found a way to make it work and in doing so he’s had a very successful life and career. I commend him for making this video. It’s raw and honest and I think it will inspire a lot of young people. Keep reading »
OK, maybe Nicki Minaj is not the world’s most eloquent speaker. But you don’t have to be Barack Obama to get the point across that suicide is never the answer. At the 2010 BET Awards, Nicki spoke up about the tragic suicide of Rutgers University freshman Tyler Clementi, who jumped to his death last month after his roommate live-streamed video on the Internet of Tyler hooking up with a man. “I would encourage my gay fans to be fighters, to be brave,” Nicki said. “I could never imagine what they’re going through, but suicide is never the answer. Things always get better. I’m supporting you guys and I love you very, very much. And for the people that don’t love you … (long pause) they need help. They need help.” We hope that more celebs like Nicki, Ellen Degeneres, and columnist Dan Savage speak up and tell gay teens, it only gets better. [Colorlines] Keep reading »
Joseph Cerniglia, a 39-year-old chef and restaurant owner, was found floating in the Hudson River on Friday after he took his life by jumping off the George Washington Bridge. His New Jersey restaurant, Campagnia, was featured on an episode of Gordon Ramsay’s “Kitchen Nightmares” back in 2007. Keep reading »
Being a teen is hard — but being a teen with really bad acne is positively suicidal, at least according to a new Norwegian study. Teens with bad skin are two times as likely to have suicidal thoughts, say researchers from the University of Oslo. The study examined the psychological habits of Norwegian teens. Fourteen percent of teens reported having “a lot” of acne, and of those, 25 percent said they had suicidal thoughts, compared to 11 percent of the overall teen population. Bad acne was also linked to a lower attachment to friends, and teens with acne tended to have fewer boyfriends and girlfriends, and do worse in school.
But — before you pull out the hanky in despair — it might actually be teens’ acne meds that are making them suicidal. A drug found in several anti-acne medication, Isotretinoin, has been linked to depression, suicide, and suicidal thoughts. So, basically, you’re damned if you have bad acne, and you’re damned if you try to do something about it. [CNN] Keep reading »
In May of this year, I wrote about promising, young LPGA golfer Erica Blasberg, who was found dead in her home in Henderson, Nevada, the day she was supposed to leave for a tournament in Alabama. The circumstances surrounding her death were a mystery, but now it has officially been ruled a suicide by suffocation. Additionally, Dr. Thomas Hess, a friend of the 25-year-old who called 911 upon finding her body, was arrested by police and will likely be charged with obstruction of justice because police say he removed pills and a suicide note from her home before authorities arrived. Keep reading »
“I didn’t have any fight in me. I didn’t care about anything. I just wanted out. At that moment, I wanted out. I wanted it to be over with – all of it, all of that s**t … I just sat in the closet and looked at the mirror and took all the pills in the bottle. I wanted to go to sleep and just be at peace. I knew exactly what I was doing. You can’t accidentally take a whole bottle of pills.”
– Fantasia Barrino tells VH1′s “Behind the Music” that her overdose earlier this month was not accidental and that she was trying to take her own life. So sad — I hope she gets the help she needs. Fantasia’s episode “Behind the Music” will air tomorrow night, the same day that her new album, Back to Me, is released. [People] Keep reading »
More bad news out of the Middle East: Fresh off Time magazine’s cover story on the state of Afghanistan (with accompanying extremely disturbing cover photo), a new report from Afghanistan’s Health Minister found that more than 23,000 women and girls attempted suicide there last year — a “several-fold” increase on previous years.
Around 48 percent of Aghanistan’s 23.6 million people are women — so that means around .2 percent of the country’s female population has attempted suicide. Compare that with the U.S. — where 2005 statistics found that 6,730 women committed suicide — or .004 percent — and you’ll see how shocking that really is. (Attempted suicide statistics are unavailable but most reports say there is one death for every 12 to 25 attempts.)
Why are so many Afghan women taking their own lives? Keep reading »
Ryan McGinely directed this fashion video for the South Korean brand Lewitt in which model Abbey Lee Kershaw plays the part of a woman who kills herself by throwing herself off a building. Three times. In different outfits. So, you know, it’s like a suicidal fashion show. How … creative. Frockwriter depressingly reports, “it’s worth noting that South Korea has the highest female suicide rate in the OECD,” and adds, “The country’s most high profile modeling export, Daul Kim, committed suicide eight months ago (although not by jumping), part of an alarming new trend of model suicides – most of them by jumping.” Yeah, so, models and suicide. So glamorous. Or, you know, not glamorous at all. [Frockwriter] Keep reading »
Thanks to reader ACooper’s suggestion, we now have a new feature called “Dear Wendy Updates,” in which people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing today. After the jump, we hear from “Worried,” a high school student whose boyfriend’s mother had just committed suicide when she wrote to me for advice. While the subject was tragic, this was one of my most gratifying “Dear Wendy” experiences because of the way the community here rallied and showed its support for “Worried.” One reader who had once been in a similar situation even asked me to pass along her email to “Worried,” which I did and she was then able to provide further advice and support. “Worried” has been on my mind since I first heard from her, so I was really happy to learn she and her boyfriend are doing OK. Check out her update after the jump. Keep reading »