The death of Robin Williams has shocked many. And, has sparked discussions in social media the world over.
Some sad, some confused, some outraged, some righteous and some cruel.
In truth, no one has the right to judge or condemn.
I apologise in advance to anyone who reads my following words, and finds them displeasing. If you have strong thoughts about suicide, perhaps it’s best to click away…
Scared, alone and wanting an end to everything.
No more abuse - verbal or physical... of the most intrusive, personal kind.
Not another moment of the whole seemingly endless mind fuck that is a brutally damaging dysfunctional family.
Sick of being the only child, and therefore the one who bore the full assault.
Weary, at such a young age, of witnessing real life horrors.
In the very early seventies, treatment of childhood physical and sexual abuse and mental health issues were still rather unrefined. Even if I had had the chance to "see someone", in those days, and be told by some sombre, authoritative textbook psychologist that, "things will get better when you're older", would've been bloody pointless.
Do adults forget how long 'time' is to a child? Let alone a child who is treated in the worst possible ways by the very people who should provide love, protection, nurturing and supportive guidance through those tender, vulnerable years.
The concept of "older" might as well be a galaxy away.
Nor were the options to re-home abused/neglected children, carefully established... or, well regulated.
To find oneself in a “foster” home, only to be equally abused and treated like property, was confusing and terrifying. Devastating.
All trust, gone.
Imprints of multiple hands intruding on the most private, inappropriate places leave indelible scars on the soul, long after the blood has been washed away, and bruises have healed.
I’ve seen, and endured, things a child should not.
Decades cannot blur memories locked behind closed doors in the labyrinthine mind.
Once, a Gillette razor blade was to be my salvation.
I sat on the cracked toilet seat in the old decrepit bathroom, hypnotically staring at the dull grey sheen on the deceptively sharp edge. The ever so thin metal felt cool against the soft, warm skin of my wrist.
The haunted mind of a hope-less child.
I opted out of death's release, and back into a life far more sinister. A coward in my own eyes.
In high school, I was bright. Ironically, I excelled in Human Anatomy and Physiology.
But, the dread of home life kept me from concentrating for lengths at a time. I alternated between focussing on lessons and fear of the inevitable three o’clock bell.
The bell of hell, I called it, as my stomach lurched at the sound.
During school hours, I found it was easier to play the clown, and make the other kids laugh.
My distraction, was distraction.
Humour can effectively cloak a troubled mind.
And, manic humour can be a cry for help.
I understand the depths one can plummet to. Regardless of status or position in this world.
Money can't quiet an un-quiet mind.
Drugs and alcohol can dull, but they can also disturb and provoke that which lies dormant for most of the time. Cleverly concealed by bravado and uber confidence.
Many people don't really see - nor do they really listen - anymore. Many don't know how to read the signs.
We, as a society, seem to have lost intuitive cognition.
We writhe in condolences... after the fact.
When I heard of Robin Williams' death, I think I might have been among the few who didn't question, "why?".
I was very sad to hear of it, yes. But honestly, I got it.
Deep down, I felt a release for him.
He isn't haunted anymore.
The shock of his death had people questioning, "Why would he do such a thing? He was the funniest man on the planet, had everything he wanted, was rich and famous and loved by all. I/we don't get it."
Celebrity isn't a ticket to sanity.
Many will say, "the drugs and alcohol eventually led him to it". As if people need a logical reason to appease their thoughts and questions.
But so often it runs much deeper than that. To times before substance abuse made the pain "bearable".
Rarely will we ever know the real reasons.
His death will be a topic of thousands of conversations around the water cooler for, oh, at least a few days.
Before the weekend comes, and once again at the cooler on Monday, there is "the game" to discuss.
Of course, I hope that Robin's death will cause people to look deeper. Delve further into mental health with a quest to understand, and to treat those with troubled minds a little kinder, and with more mercy and compassion.
But, the cynic inside me gnaws at my hope like it is gristle on the end of a chicken bone, until the marrow is sucked out, and what's left of hope, dribbles away...
We live in a world of increasing disconnect. One where far too many of the self interested and absorbed seek a superfluous, highly maintained perfection.
There seems little consideration or tolerance for "imperfect" souls with tormented minds.
It's too easy to say, "get professional help, take some pills, then, dance, monkey, dance".
As long as the monkey keeps dancing, let's not ask questions.
Perhaps some people don't want to look too close... they might see something they don't want to see.
And it'll shatter their reflection of perceived perfection...
Rest in a trouble-less peace, Robin.