The story we’re about to tell you is a very sad one but has an important lesson we can all learn from. Remember when you first started going to gigs and your parents warned you to wear earplugs so that you didn’t damage your hearing? You probably thought they were total wowzers right? After all the whole point of seeing a band live is for it to be loud.
But sometimes choosing not to be safe can have dire consequences, as a Them Crooked Vultures fan in the UK found out the hard way. According to The Daily Mail, 52-year-old Robert McIndoe attended the concert in July 2009 to see some of his rock idols, Queens Of The Stone Age’s Josh Homme, Foo Fighters singer Dave Grohl and Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones, who make up the supergroup.
But after the gig McIndoe had trouble sleeping due to a loud ringing in his ears as a result of the loud music. His wife Shirley recounts that her husband was mad at himself for not wearing earplugs but thought the annoyance would eventually disappear. ”
When it first happened he wasn’t too bothered about it because he thought it would subside,” she said. “and the friend he had been with also had ringing in his ears that day. But it was a constant irritation. He didn’t get a night of sleep after that.”
After repeated visits to the doctors failed to solve McIndoe’s ailment he turned to sleeping pills to try and get some much needed sleep. But even the sleeping pills failed to improve his quality of life and eventually he decided to take his own life by deliberately overdosing on the pills at the families home in south-east London.
His attempt was unsuccessful and after a stint in recovery he was allowed to return home. “He said he hadn’t wanted to wake up because he couldn’t bear the thought that he was no good to us,” his wife said of the suicide attempt. “He just wanted to sleep and not be suffering. They kept him in hospital for three days and I thought that had been the low point, and we were moving forward.”
According to a psychiatrist McIndoe saw after the attempt on his life he was “prepared to be deaf or dead” if no relief could be found and even considered permanently deafening himself by having his auditory nerve cut.
On 31st October McIndoe was found dead after it appeared that he had stabbed himself to death in a second suicide attempt. “He was very distressed, saying he didn’t think he could go on,” his wife said. “It was awful, he looked terrible, and he just felt so bad all the time. He was desperate that it was never going to change – he didn’t know if he could live like this.”
A hearing into his death is currently being conducted in the UK. If you or someone you know is depressed or having suicidal thoughts for immediate assistance call Lifeline – 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service – 1300 659 467. For more information about depression and anxiety visit www.beyondblue.org.au or call the info line on 1300 22 46 36.