We lost an incredible icon yesterday. A man, a comic, a dramatic, Robin Williams brought us such joy and laughter, but in the end, found himself alone in the darkness of depression. If there’s any lesson to be learned in this tragic loss, it is that suicide is an equal opportunity killer. Depression, mental illness and addiction can happen to anyone, anywhere.
Since 1999, suicide among middle aged men has risen dramatically, according to the CDC — 27% to be specific. And, overall, suicide takes twice as many lives as homicide. Yet, it has the potential to be preventable. With better research, better identification, and better access to the right treatments and supports, we can prevent many of these unnatural deaths.
This is a sad time. Here at the National Council for Behavioral Health, our hearts go out to Robin Williams’ family and friends and to all of us who have lost the laughter he brought into our lives.