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Suicide in a modern Ireland

Updated on January 26, 2011

What is driving so many suicides in modern Ireland?

I currently volunteer with an organisation that deals with depression and helping people who find themselves struggling with the pressures of life in general. Mental health in Ireland has often been seen as a taboo and suicide even in modern Ireland is a faux pas, that still harbours the stigma of days gone by.

Reading the newspaper the other day, I was startled to read so clearly in black and white the instances of suicide in Ireland. Men appear to be those more affected and the so called Celtic Tiger and the bust of the greatest little economy that never really was and financial doom seem to be more common reasons for it.

What does a 50 year old man, who has no doubt been working for 30 years, has lived and survived the 1980's era of dull monotony and mass immigration, have to fear from the current economic downturn? How is it that this man, who has shown his fighting spirit and resistance, is now the victim of suicide?

The answer is perhaps that while the banks in modern Ireland in cahoots with the property developers and the flawed government were allowing for property prices to peak beyond any normal person's means; the 50 year old's of Ireland, were remortgaging their homes in order to provide a guarantee for their children's properties. Now those same children are leaving Ireland in their droves and being left behind are their parents and their properties.

Is it any wonder the people older generations of the country are taking their lives, feeling the sense of failure and sheer bewilderment, while those in the elite class and the government retain their spoils of boom time.

As a young woman, born at the start of the '80's exodus, educated during the so called boom and now jobless and penniless in the aftermath of excess, I can understand why these men especially, the father's of our modern Ireland are committing suicide. We need to urge the government to pressure the banks to relief the stress and sense of futility, so that the grandfather's of my friends children will be alive to see them grown up.


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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Can only hope that people stop and take stock of the good in their lives first. I know from dealing with people with suicidal thoughts, that there is always some brightness, it can just be difficult to see sometimes.

      Lucky to have your faith in these times, Enlydia

    • Enlydia Listener profile image

      Enlydia Listener 

      7 years ago from trailer in the country

      we (my husband and I) are useless in America...we are in our 50's...but we have our faith to help us to carry on in a crazy existance.

    • Jefsaid profile image


      7 years ago from London, UK

      Good article.

      For me, the boom times only boomed for those who were already wealthy. With the freedom to exploit any avenue to further their wealth they instigated the dream of future wealth to the ignorant masses e.g. property investment. Now that the boom has inevitably burst and having already depeleted the masses of present and future earnings they add further insult to injury by tasking us with the hardship of 'cutting our cloth' to ultimately protect their power and privelage e.g. the banks. The reality is that if they had an ounce of ethics, we would not be in this situation now. While they were more than happy to gamble with our money I do not suspect they possess any moral principles to suggest taking any risks with their own in these times of hardship. Life will find its way!


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