I'M NOT A COUNTRY music fan. In fact, before tonight's news I had never heard the voice of country music star Mindy McCready. And had it not been for the one particular sentence uttered by the reporter, I probably would have dismissed her recent suicide as yet another tragic end to fame.
When the reporter mentioned that Ms. McCready is survived by her ten-month old son I immediately thought: postpartum depression.
I did a little research. I could have done a lot more but the gist of what I discovered is that Ms. McCready had led a very turbulent existence. She struggled with addictions and had attempted suicide several times. She'd been in trouble with the law and at one point her ex-boyfriend (and father of her first child) tried to kill her. It's believed that a woman with a history of mental illness (and likely multiple unhealed traumas) is more likely to develop PPD.
A month or so ago, McCready's current boyfriend also committed suicide. Surely this devastation must have exacerbated her symptoms because she checked herself in to rehab because she feared she was falling off the wagon.
I know there are no easy answers for mental illness but I have to wonder if Ms. McCready's doctors ignored or downplayed symptoms of what likely could have been PPD.
Every time I hear about a suicide, I feel that society has failed that deceased individual. Some people see suicide as a selfish act. I strongly disagree. I see it as the final deed of a broken human being.
What are your thoughts? It's okay to disagree.