I WAS listening to John Masterson on KLCR FM on Saturday afternoon. His show is excellently produced by Edwina Grace and he started to review the papers and suddenly, I stopped in my tracks. He was reading a report from one of the papers which said that decreasing alcohol consumption cuts down in suicide.
So here is a sure way of helping to reduce the number of people who take their own lives in Ireland every year. When you think about the problem, it makes perfect sense and it is something that every person should keep in mind. Alcohol in moderation is fine but when you drink too much, you are not in full control and your reasoning becomes blurred.
So the message is simple, in a lot of cases, cutting down on alcohol consumption or cutting it out altogether will improve your mental health and that’s a proven fact and it decreases the risk of suicide.
In this week’s paper on Page 4 and 5 we carry the harrowing details of a an arson attack on a house that led to the owner of that house taking his own life. It had nothing to do with drink and as Judge Alice Doyle said in her summing up, the poor man said in his suicide note that every time her closed hie eyes he could see the flames.
She added that it was one of the saddest cases to come before her. On behalf of the Kilkenny People we would like to sympathise with the family and to say how brave we think Michelle Delahunty is to allow her victim impact statement to be read out in court.
It is a courageous piece written by a courageous woman who was supported by her family, community and by her school friends. It is not the intention of this paper to rake up difficult issues but if the report of what happened on April 1, 2011 saves one life it will have been worth it.
Everyone needs to communicate, to talk to other people and to express themselves; what they are feeling and what is on their mind. Michelle’s story is like an open wound we can almost feel the blood following from it and I know that we all feel for her, her two little children, her family and of course her husband, Brendan’s family. They need our support over the coming days, months and years.
If you have been affected by what you read, contact The Samaritans who have an office on Dean Street, Kilkenny where you can call in and have a chat and where the volunteer just listens, in a kind and nonjudgemental manner. The phone number is 056-7765554 or the lo-call number 1850 60 90 90. Samaritans is a 24 hour service and those who man the phones and the office care.
Deputy Phil Hogan needs to go down to Graignamanagh and look at the devastation that the latest flooding of the Duiske river has had on the centre of the town. Business people are on their knees and they can’t get insurance and for the second time in seven weeks they have been flooded with all that involves. We agree with Cllr Tommy Prendergast, we must implement the flood relief scheme for the Barrow and the Duiske as soon as possible before there are no more businesses left to protect in the town.