Joan and Mike were interviewed just over a year after their son Edward took his own life. They have one other younger son. Edward was a very artistic, creative young man who was enjoying his first year in residence at Hull University. Edward loved the social life and drank, smoked and took drugs. Friends noticed a significant and sudden change in his behaviour and he spoke of getting messages through his CD player and thinking that he was Jesus Christ. He bought a Samurai sword and used it to take his own life. It would seem that he was experiencing a form of schizophrenic episode.
Other than a strange telephone call a couple of hours before he died, Joan and Mike had been given no reason for thinking that Edward was contemplating taking his own life.
Joan went back to work much earlier than Mike, but continues to have adverse physical symptoms and remains in a very distressed state. She is anxious when he is away and they both worry for one another and for the younger son. They both feel that their tragedy has aged them a lot and that life will never be the same again.
Part of the series The Suicide of Young People and its Impact on the Family.