The European recession is causing the male suicide rate to skyrocket. Jillian Godsil tells her own story of bankruptcy and, ultimately, hope.
I have seen here the battles people are going through here in Ireland—the recession, bankruptcy, mental health and even suicide. If you are following the world suicide awareness week in September, you would note that statistics across Europe are climbing dangerously with the recession. Statistics from Ireland directly see a huge jump in male suicides, especially from construction workers who have been amongst the most hard hit financially. This is a huge problem here as the government has refused to address the issues directly—they have pulled up the drawbridge so that the inner circle are protected while the ordinary man or woman is thrown to the wolves. There was one very high profile case of a man, Fiachra Daly, who committed suicide when he and others were forced to leave an apartment block through shoddy building but the banks refused to either transfer mortgages or even talk to the homeowners affected. His brave widow went on national television to highlight this case.
Ireland from the outside is presenting the image of a plucky nation sucking it up and doing well in austerity. This is very far from the truth. Emigration is at famine levels, unemployment is widespread and suicide through financial worry is very much on the up.
In light of all that is happening, I made this presentation to talk about debt and its impact. This is a personal story that has a wide impact.
My friends at SETV asked me if I would talk to camera about my journey so far in debt. I know I am only in the middle. I have not finished my journey. I am still in hock to the banks for more than €1million, my home is repossessed, my business gone, my possessions sold save for a ten year old American Fridge Freeze from my old house, and while that is very good at keeping food cold, it is less reliable as a place to live lol
I have learnt one thing on this journey, which is far from over, that while worries may assail us on all sides, it is also vital to live even as we struggle. We will not get back the years that debt may steal from us, so the only alternative is to live like crazy, seize the day and love, and breathe, and hope, and be. Always be.
This is for anyone dealing with debt. God bless! xx
Read more from Jillian on her blog Writing My Way Out of Trouble
Photo: phallin / flickr