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Question
Posted by: Maria | 2011/01/11

Table Mountain suicide

Hey CS, happy new year.

I assume you have seen the news stories about the man who jumped to his death on Table Mountain. I see in the comments that some people thinks he had bipolar disorder, based on him giving away his expensive car and committing suicide. What do you think?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Diagnosing in an absence of real information is not usually fruitful. And suicide most often stems from Depression, which may be just plain old Depression ( unfashionable to diagnose, these days ) or Bipolar Disorder, or sheer despair at a life plan and business that seems ruined.
When someone inexplicably starts giving away their possessions, as may have happened in this case, this can be a sinister sign in a depressed and distressed person. I recall cases in adolescent suicides where parents didn't pause to wonder about a kid who gave away their videogames and sound system. This is different from merely being generous, it is parting with prized possessions because you are sure you won't need them any more.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Liza | 2011/01/11

Interesting question. I guess that anything is possible. Looking forward to seeing CS reply.

Reply to Liza
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/01/11

Diagnosing in an absence of real information is not usually fruitful. And suicide most often stems from Depression, which may be just plain old Depression ( unfashionable to diagnose, these days ) or Bipolar Disorder, or sheer despair at a life plan and business that seems ruined.
When someone inexplicably starts giving away their possessions, as may have happened in this case, this can be a sinister sign in a depressed and distressed person. I recall cases in adolescent suicides where parents didn't pause to wonder about a kid who gave away their videogames and sound system. This is different from merely being generous, it is parting with prized possessions because you are sure you won't need them any more.

Reply to cybershrink

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