I would respectfully contradict the notion that suicide is selfish, from the perspective of the person acting on it. We never know what pain is in their head, how long it has been there, and what they have dealt with day in and day out before bringing it to the end. Mental illness has a stigma already; people who commit suicide just can't defend themselves any longer.
I am sorry for you, and your neighbor, and all of you involved. I'm not a forensic and/or crime scene professional, just have a layperson's interest in such things. From the gun you describe and the method.....it does seem unlikely that he was still alive. There are only certain people who can officially declare a death, and even that is dependent on area, and it seems to me that's why that choice was made? I don't know. It seems like a horrible thing for the law enforcement and medical professionals involved to do.
First, hbw, I am so sorry for everyone's trauma and grief.
I'm also so very glad no one else was hurt, during this tragedy. Especially when firearms are involved--well, just so scary, and glad this fella only physically harmed himself, and no one else.
Ginger, thank you for saying that, about suicide. Having worked in the mental health field quite long enough to have interacted with many people this ill--it really bothers me when some humans blame the victim.
This person was *fatally ill* and it's being painted as a character flaw, which just leaves me shaking my head.
If someone dies in a diabetic coma, they aren't called selfish. If someone has a heart attack and dies suddenly, right in front of family and friends, they are not called selfish.
Few people criticize the terminally ill cancer patient who--unable to deal with pain that is horrific and can't be medically controlled, wishes to go ahead and end their own suffering.
Somehow, though, when it's mental anguish that is causing such horrific, unending pain...they are selfish.
Look, any generalizations are apt to be simplistic, but I do wish folks would THINK before saying such things.
I have no idea why hbwright's neighbor came to this sad end, really, but it sounds as if he was just...fatally ill.
Are there things mentally ill folks could do, to help heal, and to help prevent such deaths? Well, sure, to some extent.
Just like the diabetic could monitor their glucose levels more assiduously, and the heart disease patient could follow doctor's orders more carefully, and so on and so forth.
Make no mistake, mental illness still bears a stigma, and the patient experiences bigotry, sometimes even after death.
I would like to see folks be kind, when appropriate and possible, to humans who are this sad and anxious--that death seems far better.
Healing vibes to all who surrounded this event, hbw.
I don't know your spiritual beliefs, but perhaps some sort of saging ceremony, a blessing and cleansing, I dunno, something along those lines, might help you guys feel safer and more comfortable around the house and the yard.