I’m Sorry I Couldn’t Help

A few days ago a couple of on-line friends were sending me a link to a final good-bye post from another blogger, hoping that it wasn’t The Music Man. I read it, saw Dooce’s post about it, and felt really sad for this person I didn’t know, that they would feel so full of despair and hopelessness that they would take their own life to end their pain.

But then today I saw a former tenant of my building post a photo of himself with a couple other old tenants on Facebook. In the caption he said something about missing Jeff. Jeff was in the photo along with all of them, holding up a beer, and smiling. I asked him what happened to Jeff and that’s when it all clicked.

Jeff committed suicide on May 8th.

Jeff is Glueslabs.

So no, it wasn’t The Music Man who tragically took his own life but it was a former tenant and someone who I knew. Jeff was a good guy. Sure, he was late on his rent sometimes and yes, when he moved out I had to clean cat hair out of the fridge, but he was really nice. I figured he was somewhere in Seattle, living his life with his cats, maybe doing better than he had when he was at my building.

But he wasn’t.

I’m sitting here remembering him with a heavy heart. He lived two floors below me for two years and I had no idea that he was in such a bad place emotionally. None of us really know what those around us are going through, do we? And we don’t often take the time to ask or to listen. I hope I can ask more and listen deeper.  And I hope that those who are feeling alone in the world can tell someone and that someone will really listen.


12 thoughts on “I’m Sorry I Couldn’t Help

  1. Somehow on Tuesday, I missed Heather’s tweets and her post about Jeff. I just read his goodbye, and it brought tears to my eyes.

    It makes me REALLY hope that The Music man gets help before it’s too late and everyone shuts him out.

  2. it’s so weird – i read about the situation, and immediately thought “i wonder if sizzle knows him from her building.” not even in the context of the Music Man (i figured if something had happened to him, we’d probably hear about that from you). i then dismissed it – duh, not everyone in seattle knows each other, and they certainly don’t all live in sizzle’s building – but… yeah.

    i’m so sorry – for you, having met him; for his friends; for everyone who knew him online. depression is fucking unfair.

  3. My God…that’s horrible. I’m so sorry to hear about that. It is awful to think about how you might never know how much pain someone so near to you is in.

  4. When I saw it on Twitter/Tumblr my first thought was “I wonder if that’s the Music Man.” But how sad that there’s still a connection. I’m glad you guys are moving onto a new place. A fresh start sounds like a good thing.

  5. It makes me so, so sad if someone is in such despair that there is nothing that will help. From his last post, it sounded like he did have friends who cared, who wanted to help. To know that all the love and care was not enough to keep him alive is a tragedy.

  6. Oh my gosh I read Dooce’s post and thought of you but thought there was no way it could be the Music Man….I can’t believe it was someone else you knew. Ugh. So tragic.

  7. Oh wow, SIzz, I’m really sorry for such a loss. All this talk reminds me of high school. There was a kid with special needs (maybe he was Autistic, though it wasn’t called that when I was in school). All he wanted in life was to be liked by the popular kids. The popular kids would take him in, taunt him, tease him, make fun of him and never fully accept him. That kid committed suicide our senior year. No one really knows if it was accidental or on purpose. But, I’m quite certain the popular kids were really taken aback and took a long hard look at how they treated others. Not at all insinuating you’ve been anything other than fair and kind to your tenants, but I think when people die too soon, regardless of circumstance, it gives us all an opportunity to think about how we live our lives. Heart you, friend.

  8. Very sorry to hear… I read that final goodbye and although I didn’t know him specifically, I did know someone who felt similar, he has been gone almost three years now. It makes me sad that so many people feel that much despair that they have to end their own lives.

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