FanPost

Junior, Concussions, and Depression

I am terribly sorry if this is an inappropriate place to write this (and I feel quite sure that it is), but I cannot think of any other place where this might be more appropriate.

Hearing the news of Junior Seau's death was surprising. To hear that it was an apparent suicide (and for the sake of this commentary, I will assume that the current reports of suicide are correct while acknowledging that they are not conclusive) was shocking. At least, it was initially. After a few moments reflection, though, I remembered that suicide is in fact much more common than most of us I would like to admit.

What has been the most shocking to me, however, is how quickly various commentators have jumped to the conclusion that this was ultimately a result of chronic brain injury. No doubt Junior took plenty of shots to the head. And there is no doubt that he suffered multiple concussions. But I cannot help but be appalled at the automatic connection, as though only some form of brain trauma could possibly cause such aberrant behavior.

The truth is that clinical depression and suicide are far more prevalent than anyone wants to admit or reports. It's much easier to point the finger at some unreachable assailant, instead of accepting the fact that a person may simply no longer wish to live. That concept is so foreign to anyone that is enjoying or even muddling through life that to contemplate someone as successful, popular, and loved as Seau could do it without some external cause is all but impossible. I'm here to tell you that it is not only possible but likely. Concussions are bad. Repeated brain trauma can be deadly. Neither is necessary nor sufficient to account for suicidal depression. And the fact that all of the "experts" are so ready to place the blame on concussions, instead of, oh, I don't know, considering that maybe Junior suffered from severe depression after having to retire from the one profession he's known all his life ... it's just inexcusable.

I am deeply saddened by Junior's death, whatever the cause. I am even sadder that apparently no one in the public sphere (with the possible exception of Marcellus Wiley) has even allowed for the fact clinical depression, as opposed to brain trauma, could be the cause.

You know that stupid Cymbalta commercial? "Depression hurts". It doesn't just hurt ... it kills.

This FanPost was written by a reader and member of Canal Street Chronicles. It does not necessarily reflect the views of CSC and its staff or editors.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join Canal Street Chronicles

You must be a member of Canal Street Chronicles to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Canal Street Chronicles. You should read them.

Join Canal Street Chronicles

You must be a member of Canal Street Chronicles to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Canal Street Chronicles. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker