Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Jocelyn Desmond January 27, 1995 - March 15, 2012
Jocelyn on the right and her friend Nicole
Jocelyn Albright Desmond, of Davidson, took her own life last week and the world for the most part didn't pause to notice.
Life of course goes on, as death is a daily occurrence and most of us wouldn't know that this beautiful girl committed suicide unless we happened to notice her photo center in a sea of much older people in Sunday's Charlotte Observer.
Main stream media, doesn't run stories about people who kill themselves unless they tie up traffic, jump from a bridge or murder a bunch of other people first. There is a theory that taking about it will cause other teens to do the same.
So it is left to those friends and family to know this, it is a silent burden, one that no one whats to talk about. These are the victims of Jocelyn's suicide.
Outside of her closest friends and family her death is only spoken of in hushed tones and most act as if God simply took her. Words like "she's an angel now" and "a better place" and the time worn phrase "My thoughts and prayers are with you" are tossed about like confetti. Well meaning people rarely know what to say when someone who has lived a long life passes away, but when it a child commits suicide, no words really suffice.
The Charlotte Observer obituary was short and sweet and included a hint of what happened, is here.
Jocelyn was a junior at W. A. Hough High School in Cornelius, North Carolina more importantly she was just 17.
Jocelyn's twitter account has been shut down, deleted as if it never existed, but some of her last tweets are still out there.
@Joc_Dez: i've made my mistakes and i've lost some of the people i love. but it all happens to make us stronger.
An indication she was OK, but Jocelyn wasn't ok. The tweets that followed are troubling:
"@Joc_Dez: So confused right now its not even funny. Being blamed for something i dont even know about."
"@Joc_Dez: I wonder if people would even care enough to notice."
and a few hours later her last tweet:
"@Joc_Dez: Close Going off the deep end and no ones trying to save me.”
Jocelyn by many reports was being bullied by someone or perhaps a group of people, teenagers are mean like that, there is a tendency to "pile on", and in the fog that is so often our youth she determined she didn't want to live any longer, that her life was just not worth living.
Of course we know she was wrong.
A week ago on Wednesday March 14, word spread quickly through W.A. Hough high School, that something had happened to Jocelyn and she was in the hospital. By mid afternoon there were a dozen tweets many like this one:
"I love you so much. My family is praying for you. Get better soon!"
and many other posted as replies to her twitter handle.
But by the afternoon of March 15 the news had spread Jocelyn had died with her family by her side. The obituary said "peacefully".
But we all know there is little peace in a hospital.
The twitter posts after her death was noted were predictable:
@Joc_Dez i wish i would of saw this earlier before we lost you!! )":
Jocelyn's family agreed to have her organs donated, and within hours Jocelyn's body had saved three lives. Many would go on to say that Jocelyn saved 3 lives as if that made her death worth something, it is not.
Her life was.
On Saturday there was a service at the Journey Church in Huntersville.
And the family requested that donations in lieu of flowers be made to Pacer's National Bullying Prevention Center at www.pacer.org (952-838-9000) or The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention at www.afsp.org(1-888-333-2377)
And that was that.
But there's more, it is now up to you to do something. Take some time to learn how to spot someone who is in trouble, you can start here.
And there is help for victims of suicide here.
For those who knew Jocelyn and those who didn't check out Tracy's Grace Space and her post about Jocelyn here.