Tuesday 12 December 2017

'A loved-one's suicide is not something you get over'

Margaret Brennan holding a photo of her sister Alison who lost her life to suicide at the age of 47. Margaret performed in honor of her sister at the Console Christmas Celebration of Light held at St Patrick's College Maynooth.
Margaret Brennan holding a photo of her sister Alison who lost her life to suicide at the age of 47. Margaret performed in honor of her sister at the Console Christmas Celebration of Light held at St Patrick's College Maynooth.
John Meagher

John Meagher

MARGARET Brennan was joined by her youngest daughter as she took to the stage to sing at the Celebration of Light.

With vocal accompaniment from six-year-old Ali, she sung the haunting 'By the Boab Tree' in honour of her sister Alison, who took her own life on New Year's Eve 2011.

"Alison was a paranoid schizophrenic who had been in and out of hospital for years," Margaret says.

"She had tried suicide before, but we had never really thought she would go ahead and do it and when she died it was by the most violent method imaginable.

"Her suicide has had the most enormous effect on her husband and us siblings. We have been shaken to the core. I keep asking myself if there was more I could have done and I know in my heart, there is.

"I could have tried to reach out to her much more. I've still got all her texts on my phone and I couldn't dream of parting with them.

"I can't remove her clothes either. I know I'll have to one day, but I just can't bring myself to do it now.

"Console's Celebration of Light reminds us that there are so many other people whose lives have been torn asunder by suicide. There's unity and togetherness, but I won't lie – when a loved one kills themselves, I'm not sure it's something you can ever get over."

Irish Independent

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