‘He was desperately fighting for his life’

 

OCTOBER 20, 2018, will be forever etched in the memory of Gold Coast single mum Sue Lamb: her only child, Jaidyn Bohl, 19, hanged himself at their Labrador home.

And she doesn't want other parents to suffer the same devastating pain of losing a child to suicide.

"There's an epidemic out there taking our kids," she says. "Suicide is everywhere. Our kids are exposed to sites that show them how to (kill) themselves. It shows you step 1, 2 and dead bodies. It's so wrong.

"Like others who have committed suicide, Jaidyn lost hope and when you lose hope, the darkness comes."

Ms Lamb, a mental health worker, said that in the week before his death - and particularly the final 48 hours - Jaidyn was deeply anxious and depressed.

"He was desperately fighting for his life but he refused to let me call an ambulance for fear of being locked away," she said.

"He had seen news reports about the mental health system and he thought he wasn't like those people. He thought he could handle it.

Sue and her son Jaidyn in happier times.
Sue and her son Jaidyn in happier times.

"He had been struggling terribly with anxiety and depression but there was an eight-week wait in the public health system for a psychologist.

"The mental health system is broken.

"I couldn't get him an appointment with the psychiatrist that had prescribed the antidepressant Lexapro five weeks earlier - his first time on meds.

"I phoned his office and said there was something wrong with his medication. The receptionist said she would get the doctor to call us, but he never did."

Ms Lamb said the day before the "quiet but funny'' teenager killed himself, an appointment suddenly became available with a psychologist.

"He was so desperate to see someone that at 3.30pm, he got on his bike and rode to his appointment," Ms Lamb said.

Afterwards, he told his mum the session with the psychologist had gone well, he would have another session in two weeks and he insisted on going to work that night at Cav's Steakhouse.

"He said work was a good distraction and his managers told me after his death that he had worked his best shift, was happy, smiling, laughing," she said.

Jaidyn loved music and dreamed of being a DJ.
Jaidyn loved music and dreamed of being a DJ.

"He came home about 9.30pm. I was asleep and his best mate stayed with him until 2.30am, playing Uno and listening to music. Jaidyn loved music and wanted to be a DJ.

"He loved deejaying at Metro Youth Group, where he used to go to church."

In the early hours of October 20 last year, Jaidyn walked his friend to the gate and said he would see him later that day at the beach.

"I found him at 7.30am. I went to the kitchen to make coffee and he was outside on his knees," his mum said, her voice breaking.

"He looked so peaceful. He wasn't in any pain when he died. I started screaming, 'Help me, someone help me'.

"I just couldn't believe it."

Sadly, Jaidyn's psychiatrist called soon after he died.

"I told him he was too late. Jaidyn was dead," his mum said.

She said Jaidyn started struggling with anxiety and depression in Years 10 and 11, but had received treatment from a psychologist and was doing better.

Jaidyn’s psychiatrist called shortly after his death.
Jaidyn’s psychiatrist called shortly after his death.

Then last year, the former Southport State High student had to deal with the heartache of a break-up and battling to find a full-time job.

"He desperately wanted to work, did courses to better himself, handed in his resume and went for interviews but he wouldn't get hired," she said.

"He was getting blow after blow after blow, struggling with losing hope of becoming someone and he didn't know how to get a full-time job.

"By the time he realised he had a real problem with anxiety and depression, he had got himself into a real hole. I found out after his death that during that week, he had taken himself to a GP to talk to him about how much longer it would take for the medication to work."

Sadly, Ms Lamb handed in her last assessment on suicide and grief the day before her son died.

Jaidyn struggled with blow after blow.
Jaidyn struggled with blow after blow.

And how has she survived the past year?

"I'm a Christian and I have an unshakeable faith in God," she said. "Despite all the pain, tears and torment, He has given me peace. I know my son is with Him," she said.

"Jaidyn was really seeking after God and I prayed with him the night before he died."

However, she said when the grief became overwhelming, she had cried out to God at church one day for some answers.

"God gave me a vision of Jaidyn, his teeth and skin were so white and his eyes were glistening. He was walking on a beach. He turned his head around to me and said 'Mum'. Then he disappeared."

If you need someone to talk to phone Lifeline on 13 11 14.

The pain will never leave Sue.
The pain will never leave Sue.


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