Badass Activist | Eve Reiland

The Answer to "Why?" About Suicide is Mental Illness

Robin Williams’ daugher Zelda gave her first interview since the suicide of her father. Kevin Winter/Getty

Zelda Talks About Her Dad In Rolling Stone : Lots of love to this girl. Lots of love to her dad. Lots of love to everyone touched by this talented man. (Robin Williams’ Daughter: ‘There’s No Point Questioning’ Suicide)

This is Eve here … It has been my experience that Robin’s passing has opened many to start understanding mental illness. Or, at the least, to try and learn tosee the person through the stigma … seek to understand what mental illness is really about beyond the movie quotes and stereotypes.

Suicide is death via mental illness — I hate the term committed suicide, It sounds like a crime committed and feels very disrespectful to the human who was suffering. Reality, it’s a brain illness that’s gone too long without appropriate treatment.

It’s my belief that Robin William’s death highlighted that even money, success, love and family can’t cure a brain disorder alone. Not anymore than it can cure other life-threatening diagnoses. The weight of the illness doesn’t fall on the loved ones to figure out, question and solve. That’s up to doctors and folks trained with these matters. Even then, there’s so much they don’t understand yet.

Compassion, love, leaving judgement at the door and remembering mental illness is a physical disorder and not a personal choice is the only answer that makes sense to me. Every day this man woke up with a mental illness. Everyday he fought it. We enjoyed his talent and career without looking further as to why he was awesome – not knowing some of the antics we applauded were made possible by his illness. Look at all the days and battles he won. He was a warrior, like so many of us, with battles only he could see and successes he could know.

There’s so much more work to do. So much more to understand. So much stigma to break so we can see the reality of mental illness and see the human suffering separated from the behaviors caused by their illness.

If you’re looking for an answer, it’s love and compassion. Honor what we don’t understand and strive to create a better world, a real mental health care system, and a stigma-free community.

‪#‎breakthestigma‬ ‪#‎eachmindmatters‬ ‪#‎weareworthy‬ ‪#‎robinwilliams‬‪#‎zeldawilliams‬ ‪#‎love‬ ‪#‎compassion‬ ‪#‎nojudgement‬

(Originally posted by Eve on NAMI Fresno Facebook page)

By Eve Reiland

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