Today I was gut-punched by news of the apparent suicide of Anthony Bourdain. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed his television work where he managed to be tough, thoughtful, sarcastic, and compassionate all at the same time. He was a true citizen of the world, a great storyteller, and a force to behold in his mission to show the common humanity of peoples and cultures around the globe.
In the end, his personal demons caught up with him and, tragically, took him away from us far too soon.
In battles with my own demons, I have seen the precipice that Bourdain fell from today. I have walked to the edge and, in the end, with the support of professionals and friends, walked away. There are many calls today online for those that are suffering at this level to get help and reach out. This is well and good, but the problem is that, too often, folks on the edge have passed the point where they feel that they can reach out. They feel alone and too far away from the help they need. That’s why it’s equally important for those around them to reach out, reach through the veil of circular thoughts and crushing sadness, and reach those that they love.
If you see someone in your life drawing away, approaching that precipice alone, you have to reach out and hold their hand, try to bring them back. Even if you’re wrong and they aren’t that far down the darkened path, you will have made a connection and proven that you care and that they are important enough to make the effort.
Please, reach out. Make that connection. It can save a life.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (US): 1-800-273-8255
Suicide Hotline (UK): 0-8457-90-90-90