The suicide of James Abriel, is so very sad. He was only 19 years old, and he just didn’t understand that whatever his troubles were, they would pass.
Over twenty years ago, the brother of my boyfriend had a friend that tried to commit suicide, named Marcus. He was in high school, the captain of the football team, he was on track to be recruited to a major football team, everything was going his way, and then his girl friend broke up with him. He tried to kill himself, in a way, I can’t remember anymore, but he was not successful and he ended up in a wheel chair.
Marcus came to stay with my boyfriend’s brother and I would see him often. They laughed and joked together and even would joke about the fact that Marcus was in a wheelchair. They would get into Marcus’ truck together and he would drive around learning how to drive with the new handbrakes. Marcus seemed to be adjusting well.
But, when no one was laughing or joking, I would look over at Marcus and see him sitting silent in his chair. I could see he was still very sad. A sad that I am sure was there before his attempt.
I was young myself, and thought he might have still been sad over the break up, or the fact he was never getting out of that chair, or that he would never become a football star, but I never thought it was a sadness that would lead him to attempt suicide again.
Late one evening, he drove himself to his old high school and sitting in the middle of the football field in his truck, he took a gun and shot and killed himself.
I was shocked when I heard the news, and confused. I kept thinking he had to have been mentally okay, because if he was suicidal, that certainly would not have let him out or the hospital. I thought, because of his past attempt, there must have been a psychiatrist that was monitoring him, and would have know he was at risk. I blamed it on the doctors, but I never blamed it on his friends or family, as I knew they saw what I saw. He was fine; a little sad, but fine.
The fact was, Marcus had fooled everyone. He was suppose to be sad, it was natural for him to be sad, but what no one could tell, was the sadness had turned into hopelessness, and we just couldn’t tell the difference.
I think James, just like Marcus, had sadness that turned into hopelessness and no one could tell the difference. Not his roommate, his family, no one, could tell that he had crossed over from natural sadness to hopelessness.
I do not know James, but I do know that the world will miss him. Just looking at his picture, I know he would have been an asset to the world, a loving father one day, a beloved husband, but his hopelessness, led him astray and took away his ability to see his future being anything, but painful. If only, we as humans could tell the difference between sadness and hopelessness, we could have been there for them.