Bit weird time for me to write an article, isn’t it? Well, yes it is. But I have a good reason for writing one.
Today, or yesterday in Korean time, one of my favourite artists committed suicide.
Like I let you know before, I’ve been fan of the kpop band SHINee since I was 15 and I have always had a love for two of its members: Key and Jonghyun. Key was my bias, as we call it, which means that he was my favourite member out of the five of them. But Jonghyun has always been a close second.
As many of you know, I have been severely depressed about half a year ago, which hasn’t exactly been a walk in the park. One of the main things that got me through it all was Jonghyun’s music, as well as SHINee’s music.
He went solo in January 2015 with his album Base. Oh how I love his music! Everything is there: sad music, happy music, jazzy music. For every mood there is a song basically. And oh damn those vocals hit me right in the core each time. He was like a compass when I was lost sometimes. You can really hear that he loved music with all he had. You could also hear his depression. The more he produced, the sadder the songs became.
Yesterday, 6:30 Korean Time, he was found dead in a hotel room after sending his sister a suicide note. He killed himself by carbon monoxide poisoning. A popular suicide method in South Korea is burning up brown coal in a closed off room so you breathe in the carbon monoxide fumes and basically die softly. (which is some comfort. He didn’t suffer any pain). It will probably never reach them, but I would like to send my condolences to his family, his friends and his former SHINee members who were like family and best friends to him. Hopefully, his pain and suffering has ended and he is at peace now, watching over his loved ones. Thank you for your beautiful music which has helped me go through a lot already and will continue to help me for a long time. May you rest in peace our dear Jjong!
”So I say
Thank you for the music, the songs I’m singing
Thanks for all the joy they’re bringing
Who can live without it, I ask in all honesty
What would life be?
Without a song or a dance what are we?
So I say thank you for the music
For giving it to me” – ABBA
I found out when one of my best friends send me a text message. I felt shocked immediately and I went cold all over. It couldn’t be true. No. Just no!
Unfortunately, when I opened social media it was all over. Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook. Everywhere. Even important news sites like the BBC and our Dutch Telegraaf soon reported about it. I was (and still am) in shock. How can someone like Jonghyun, SHINee’s own Jonghyun, be so beaten up by depression that the only way out is suicide?
I have felt devastated all afternoon. I cried. Hard. I cheered up and then cried again, alone in the bathroom. Which was my own choice because I just wanted to be alone since I am at my university right now, surrounded by loads of people. I have thought about it all afternoon, felt alone all afternoon, felt depressed all afternoon. Because if someone like Jonghyun can’t survive the demons of depression, how will I ever do it then? How will I be able to deal with this with my HSP-brain, which takes this in harder than it would most people?
And then it hit me: I will write about it. I will write about it and hopefully make others feel less lonely, break the silence.
I will write about it and talk about suicide and depression until the subject becomes something that does not have a taboo on it anymore. I will talk about it until I can talk no more. I will break the silence about depression and suicide and other mental illnesses bit by bit, as much as I can.
So I put on Jonghyun’s music, fired my laptop up and started typing. I will not let this go to waste. I will not let Jonghyun die and let that be it. His fight won’t go to waste.
I will not let the demons devour me.
I will fight back harder and prove that they can be defeated even if they make so many victims each year.
I will fight as long as I can, as hard as I can and never give up.
I will help to break the silence.
Like he said himself:
”Be honest, you know you can’t go on any longer” (from the song below)
And he couldn’t.