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Four Corners tonight moved me.

15 May

Tonight’s Four Corners dealt with the suicide of a beautiful young man.

On April 20, last year, at 5pm a 17-year-old boy checked into a hotel in central Sydney. He was carrying his older brother’s passport as ID. At 11pm, he walked to a nearby grocery store to buy food. It would be his last recorded outing. The next morning, shortly after 6am, the alarm was raised. The young man had jumped off the roof and was lying dead in the car park.

In Australia, on average, suicide happens five times a day – a statistic to most, but not to loved ones of those who die. Up in the hotel room, a handwritten note was found.


Watching, I was taken back to 1989 when I was close to such an event. At the time part of my grieving was to write a story about it, a story you may now read. It’s over there on the right under “fiction”. But it isn’t really fiction.

Make sure you read that Four Corners transcript as well, and visit my GLBT Support Page, because it was that experience with Rob that drove me as much as anything else to make sure that page went up, and fortunately my colleagues at The Mine agreed.

QUENTIN MCDERMOTT: Do you think his sexuality was a major factor in what occurred?

PROFESSOR GRAHAM MARTIN, SUICIDE PREVENTION EXPERT: I do. There’s tremendous anxiety in that, tremendous pressure, tremendous ambivalence – “Should I tell? Should I not tell? What will be the implications? What will people say or think? Will they treat me differently? Will they love me any more?” – those kinds of things.

VOICEOVER: “I hurt from love too. Almost every day I see a boy, some fantastic-looking guy that makes my pulse quicken but also make me want to cry, and it makes me feel sad because they will never feel the same way about me, even if they were actually gay, and I cannot even tell them, not even hint about any of this to them. He will not so much as glance at me. There is nothing in the whole world that has caused me more hurt than this. Nothing.”

— from Four Corners.

Well done, ABC.



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3 responses to “Four Corners tonight moved me.

  1. Mikey

    May 17, 2006 at 11:51 pm

    It’s a tragedy, but I couldn’t help but feel for one of his teachers, Jeff Long. I think my studies in education and teaching has made me a little teacher-centric of late.

    I’ve always had the impression that teachers invest so much emotional capital in their students, whether they want to or not. And when something like this happens, it’s got to hurt. Especially when as a teacher you pick up on things and try to help, like Mr Long did, and couldn’t do anything about it.

     
  2. Owner

    May 18, 2006 at 11:14 am

    Yes, I admired Jeff Long and really felt for him too. The principal, on the other hand, while I also could see where he was coming from, gave me the creeps just a bit. What did you think?

     
  3. mannick

    May 22, 2006 at 9:19 pm

     
 
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