LIVES LOST TO SUICIDE
I WISH THIS PAGE DIDN'T EXIST
BUT SADLY IT DOES, IT'S HERE AND IT'S HERE FOR IMPACT.
I WANT THE WORLD TO SEE HOW REAL THE LINK IS BETWEEN
SEXUAL CHILD ABUSE AND RAPE TO SUICIDE
PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO THINK OF THE FAMILIES OF THOSE INNOCENT AT HEART WHO NEVER FOUND A WAY OUT
SUSAN MARIE GARVIN
PHOTO SUSAN AND NEPHEW
It was 1973. I was newly married and expecting my first child. I believed everything was perfect. Then, I get a phone call from my mother. My younger sister had been raped. Susan and Mom had to take her cat to the vet. The vet said he couldn't save her pet and would have to put him to sleep. Susan was so upset that she ran outside and started walking around crying. She was only a block away when a car pulled over and the man inside asked if she needed a ride. She told him no thanks and kept walking. He got out of his car and told her to get inside. She again told him no. He punched her in the face and put a knife to her throat and drug her into his car where he proceeded to rape her. He drove around for a while and asked where she lived so he could drop her off. She gave the address of a friend so that he wouldn't know where she lived. The police were called and a report taken and she went to the hospital for an exam. In 1973, there was no DNA technology. At most, blood type might be found in semen. There was no aftercare for rape victims. It was only, "You'll be okay. You have no serious injuries." Rape was not spoken of in polite company. It was swept under the carpet or whispered about. No one worried about the lasting effects on the victim. Susan left our hometown and went to live with our older sister in Houston where nobody knew her. She continued high school, but skipped her senior year and went straight to college. When she was working on her Bachelor's degree, she started doing drugs. Her drug of choice was crystal meth. She was fighting depression and the feeling that she was soiled and not worthy of affection. The drugs didn't numb her enough to face the world, so she overdosed. Once in the hospital, they treated her solely with more chemicals. She still felt lost and removed the blades from a safety razor and swallowed them. When the doctors and staff came rushing into her room, she stated, "Now will someone talk to me?" Susan called me collect every night just to talk. She needed someone to listen to how she felt. With all the staff there, no one ever asked her what the problem was. She was the "attempted suicide" in room 202, not a person with problems. She finally got one on one therapy and was able to leave. She went back to college and was working on her Master's degree when she was diagnosed with cancer of the uterus, ovaries, and the colon. She had a complete hysterectomy at 25. She continued college while undergoing chemotherapy. She lost her hair. She got sick. But she finished college and even got her PhD in economics. I thought she had beaten her problems. She had two more battles with cancer and received more chemo. Then, as an effect of those chemicals, she started having seizures. She had to leave her position as a professor. Then the depression reared its ugly head again. She sought help, but was again treated chemically. No doctor spent enough time talking to her. They only asked if this drug was working or is this other drug working. They kept telling her to give it time. December of 2015 found Susan slipping even more. She was in physical pain and mental pain. The anniversary of her rape had just passed. She called her therapist and told her the medications weren't working and was told to come in the next week. I tried to persuade her to go to the emergency room but she couldn't stand to wait 7 or 8 hours for help. We agreed that she go to sleep that night and we would find a solution in the morning together. Susan found her own solution. She called a cab and went to a pawn shop and bought a pistol. I took her some of her favorite eclairs and she ate them. I thought she was feeling better. That night, I received a phone call from her boyfriend that she had shot herself. She kept telling me that I didn't understand. My brain looks at things logically. If this is a problem, then this is the solution. Susan would tell me that logically she understood that, but that her mind wouldn't accept that as a solution. I told her that I didn't understand, but if she talked to me, I would try. I told her that if she didn't say anything, I couldn't begin to understand. Nobody can ever know what's going on in another person's mind unless they speak up.