Ever since my brother took his own life, I have become ever more aware of our national avoidance of this topic. It seems that as our suicide rate goes up, our tolerance of the subject goes down. I know my parents were probably watching and relating too well to Clay’s devastated parents. I was moved by his father’s statement, “You just never really consider your own child’s suicide.”
I wanted to research and consider all of the reasons why boomers are experiencing ever increasing rates of depression, substance abuse and suicide, so much more than their parents’ generation. I wanted to study what previous psychologists have said about how midlife can change us, and fully understand this new rite of passage finally available to all of us.
I learned that yes, midlife is known to be a time of great personal struggle, but the outcomes can be worth the battle. Embracing the real changes brought on by midlife, and negotiating those changes successfully can lead to a far happier aging process.
Here I try to share the many truths I have come to from experiencing my own midlife miracle, previously known as a crisis. If you had asked me in mid-crisis if I would ever change partners and careers successfully, I would have said, “Are you kidding me?” But I had to learn how to tell myself over and over again: HANG ON IT ALL CHANGES. I didn’t want to miss what happened next, and what happened next has turned into the best part of my entire life!
We have friends who suffer from terrible PTSD from the Vietnam War. They struggle but are still here fighting the good fight. I admire them for that.
Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem, a terrible and devastating waste of human potential.