Everybody online keeps talking about how Kate Spade was “depressed.” There’s zero evidence of that, though, as well as of any “mental illness.” You don’t have to be sick to kill yourself. There is some overlap between depressive types and suicide types but it’s not that huge. Most depressives never kill themselves. The people who keep threatening suicide or making unsuccessful attempts are in a completely different category than those who actually do kill themselves. These are all vastly different psychological types. The mopey types are actually very good at clinging to life. They feed on the energy they suck out of others. Many successful suicides are actually very upbeat, highly narcissistic people with a positive, showy persona. Obviously, there are exceptions but the correlation of “she moped and wined and then offed herself” is not true.

13 thoughts on “Suicides”

  1. It probably wasn’t depression, like you said, but it was something, right? Mental illness is too broad of a term to be an explanatory variable, though. It’s certainly not ‘normal’ to kill oneself or to inflict such cruelty towards one’s own child.

    Taken to the extreme, serial killers also suffer from some kind of mental illness, but we don’t use their illness as a mitigating factor when punishing them. On the contrary, often we use it as an aggravating factor: “He killed 5 people and he was diagnosed as a clinical psychopath. Let’s throw the book at him!”

    I don’t know where this one lies.


  2. I had a great aunt who was treated for depression. She said you had to say you had suicidal ideation in order to get meds that will work.


  3. It seems like many very driven, ambitious people like Kate Spade, once they achieve their goals, have nothing left to live for. Her company was acquired not long ago for $2.4 billion. She was unfathomably rich, respected, and probably felt she has achieved all she could achieve. It’s impossible to know someone’s mental state, of course, but I’ve known very ambitious people like that and they are lost when they reach the pinnacle of their career trajectory, no matter how high it is.

    Like you, I doubt there was depression or anything that pedestrian. She had just done what she set out to do, and there was nothing left (from her perspective).


    1. She sold the company 10 years ago and stopped working to be a stay at home mom. Which, as we are seeing from the results, was not her thing at all. Then she started a new label which was not successful. Her marriage was collapsing. At 55, which is not old, with no husband, no relationship with her daughter, and being a professional has-been is tough. Knowing that 10 years ago you were an important designer would just make it worse.


  4. Sometimes suicide isn’t meant as an escape from trauma but a way of inflicting lasting trauma on someone else.
    A very quick reading of one article suggests that it was an aggressive suicide, meant to punish her husband who was in the other room. I could be wrong but that’s my guess.


    1. I think so, too. I think it’s a narcissistic personality who didn’t know how to attract attention any more, so she went for this method. I also think it’s a revenge on the husband and also on the daughter who “made her” quit working.


      1. “revenge on the husband and also on the daughter”

        I didn’t want to go there, but… yeah. “It wasn’t your fault! Never blame yourself!” are usually code for “It’s all your fault and I hope you blame yourself forever!” Quite vicious.


  5. star’s suicide was ‘not unexpected

    In an email to NBC News, Reta Saffo said her younger sister was a “precious, precious little person” and “genuine in almost every way,” but said that her sister’s fame was unexpected and exacerbated what she believed was Spade’s bi-polar disorder.

    “She was surrounded by YES people, for far too long, therefore she did not receive the proper care for what I believed to be (and tried numerous times to get her help for) Bipolar Disorder… stemming from her immense celebrity,” Saffo said.

    In an earlier email to the Kansas City Star, Saffo said that she had frequently flown out to Napa and New York City over the last four years in an attempt to get Spade treatment.

    However, when Spade was “all set to go” she would “chicken out by morning,” Saffo said.

    Saffo said Spade feared hospitalization would negatively affect her brand and tried to self-medicate with alcohol.

    “I even said I (would) go with her and be a ‘patient’ too (she liked that idea) I said we could talk about it all — our childhood, etc. That I could help her fill in any blanks she might have . . . .” Saffo told the Star. “That seemed to make her more comfortable, and we’d get sooo close to packing her bags, but — in the end, the ‘image’ of her brand (happy-go-lucky Kate Spade) was more important
    …Spade’s husband and business partner, Andy Spade, assisted in trying to coax her into treatment, making plans on how it would work and who would take care of their daughter, Frances Beatrix, known as Bea, Saffo said. “Nothing ever came of it.”or her to keep up. She was definitely worried about what people would say if they found out.”

    Other members of Spade’s family did not corroborate Saffo’s depictions.


    1. Yeah, the husband’s statement is really out there. He’s trying to sell it like she had a heart attack. Yes, she had heart disease for years, she was feeling well the day before but then just had a heart attack at night and died.

      The sad part is not that he’s concocting this ridiculous narrative but that people are Luke to believe it. And if they are likely to believe it, it means they won’t look for help, just like she didn’t.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.