Why Suicide Is More Common Among Celebrities, CEOs And Creatives?

Some celebrities are prone to depression and bipolar disorder due to incessant media and public scrutiny

Noted Bollywood actor and television star Sushant Singh Rajput  committed suicide on Sunday. As per preliminary investigation, he was found hanging at his Bandra residence.

His demise came as a shock to many as this is the fourth death of a famous personality from the Hindi film industry to pass away in the past two months.

His death has also thrown the spotlight back on celebrities mental health.

Understanding celebrity suicides

Suicide is not a new issue, especially not in celebrity circles. These tragic deaths are also not limited by lines of work, ranging from boxers, designers, politicians and writers to actors, musicians and entrepreneurs.

‘Why’ is a question that is always asked by those left behind or hurt by these suicides – the answer or answers would never make sense to someone who loves life.

There are a myriad of situations, conditions and causes for a person wanting to take his or her own life, according to a research report released in 2005.
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Long‐term impact of celebrity suicide on suicidal ideation

Hong Kong’s famous pop star Mr Leslie Cheung had depression and died by jumping from a height on 1 April 2003. His death generated extensive media coverage that might have prompted suicidal thoughts in others. After 8–15 months, a population‐based household survey was conducted to study suicidality in Hong Kong between December 2003 and July 2004. The aim of the survey was to gauge respondents’ views about their level of suicidal ideation, psychological well‐being, life events, and whether or not they had been influenced by the celebrity suicide.

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Why suicide is more common among celebrities, CEOs and creatives

Instead of bringing them happiness and freedom, for many, being sought-after, rich and at the top of their game leads to an identity crisis and ruminations on their self-worth.
Candice Lam Yue-tung, a clinical psychologist who founded Mindcare in Central in 2008, knows first-hand the mental struggles besetting the famous and powerful from her extensive experience of treating celebrities in Hong Kong and China.

Celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain recently hanged himself. People in the public eye are more likely to suffer from depression. Photo: AlamyCelebrity chef Anthony Bourdain recently hanged himself. People in the public eye are more likely to suffer from depression. Photo: Alamy

Celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain recently hanged himself. People in the public eye are more likely to suffer from depression. Photo: Alamy

The deaths of chef and TV personality Anthony Bourdain and fashion designer Kate Spade by suicide have thrown the spotlight on celebrities and depression. Instead of bringing them happiness and freedom, for many, being sought-after, rich and at the top of their game leads to an identity crisis and ruminations on their self-worth.

Candice Lam Yue-tung, a clinical psychologist who founded Mindcare in Central in 2008, knows first-hand the mental struggles besetting the famous and powerful from her extensive experience of treating celebrities in Hong Kong and China.

While keeping her patients’ identities confidential, Lam says half of them are either celebrities, bank CEOs, or movers and shakers in the political world.

Some celebrities are prone to depression and bipolar disorder due to incessant media and public scrutiny, she adds.

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