Kate Spade’s death has not only left many of her fans heartbroken, but totally shocked to find out that the famed designer reportedly died by suicide. And now one woman’s important message of just how well hidden mental illnesses can be is going viral.
Kate, who was known as one of the most prominent designers in the fashion industry, left behind her husband of 30 years, Andy Spade, and a teenage daughter, Frances Beatix Spade. She reportedly died by suicide in her Park Avenue apartment and left behind a note for her family.
Kate Spade fan Claudia Herrara posted a photo of the designer’s handbag on her Facebook account. She captioned it with a powerful message, emphasizing that the stigma surrounding mental illnesses is one of the reasons why so many people hide their conditions.
Claudia notes that while she knew celebrities such as Patrick Swayze once battled with pancreatic cancer or that Cynthia Nixon was a breast cancer survivor, she had no idea that Kate Spade suffered from depression, the same way actor Robert Williams did before his untimely death in 2016.
Claudia wrote,“Depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, etc. feed your mind the wrong messages. They tell you to be afraid of things you know you shouldn’t be afraid of. They tell you that you aren’t good enough and don’t deserve to be alive and that things won’t get better. They tell you that everyone is out to get you, that everyone is looking at you, that everyone is judging you.”
Claudia urged her social media followers to reach out to family or friends who are struggling or feeling isolated and despondent. She also wants the public to not be afraid to openly discuss mental illnesses, both in the open and behind closed doors, too.
She added, “Depression is a monster. And if you don’t start realizing that mental illness is an illness and not joke fodder … if you don’t respond with love and compassion when someone does open up to you about it … if you know someone with these illnesses and make them feel they are weak because of them … you might want to ask yourself if maybe you are too.”
According to health experts, there is a list of warning factors when it comes to suicide that include lagging self-esteem, depression, loss of relationships or economic security and insomnia.
The National Institute of Mental Health date shows that over one million U.S. adults made plans for death or attempted suicide in 2016. At the same time though, many people lack the basic understanding of what leads many people to these deaths. Some key variables include perceived burdensomeness and even hopelessness. Health professionals stress that suicide is usually not an impulsive act.
If you know of anyone who needs help or if you are seeking help yourself, reach out to your loved ones or contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Health experts are available to take calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week.