Despite what we know about suicide – that men commit suicide 4 or 5 times more often than women – it’s always shocking and disheartening to learn that a a man with seemingly so much external success has taken his own life.
Such is the case of Tony Scott, famed director and producer of films such as Top Gun and TV shows like The Good Wife and Numb3rs. People are clinging desperately to guesses in trying to find an answer why he would choose to die.
ABC news reported on Monday that an anonymous source close Mr. Scott’s family said he had inoperable brain cancer, a fact which Newser reports Scott’s family is refuting. So far no evidence that Scott had a tumor of any sort has surfaced.
Why do we do this? Why do we wish it were because of a brain tumor? Perhaps because we want him to seem like a hero, and suicide does not seem heroic to us unless there is a dramatic and unsolvable situation at hand.
In this case, however, it simply appears not to be true. It appears Tony Scott was among the roughly one million people per year who takes their own lives. We wish there were more for us to understand, but perhaps there is nothing more to get.
It must also be known that suicide can be considered “contagious” and that after celebrity deaths to suicide, rates of suicide climb. It cannot be stressed enough that we here at The Good Men Project are dedicated to helping forge a new path in the discussions that surround men’s issues with depression, mental illness and the specific challenges men face when entering the mental health-care system.