Anthony Bourdain Suicide Background Causes

The Truth Behind The Suicide Of Anthony Bourdain

One man's tragic fate shines light upon men's use, abuse, and despair.

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On June 8th, food and travel lovers around the world were shocked to hear of the tragic death of Anthony Bourdain, a beloved celebrity chef and lover of the world and all its cultures, Bourdain had been working on an episode of his travel series, Parts Unknown, in Strasbourg, France, when he was found dead in his hotel room. Fans and audiences became more heartbroken to learn that the 61-year old's cause of death was suicide by hanging. This news has predictably prompted conversation about mental health awareness and the rise of male suicide. Having looked into the topic, I believe I can shed some light on why Mr. Bourdain may have chosen to end his life, and it has surprisingly little to do with possible unknown mental issues.

First, we should examine events leading up to the suicide. It is well-known that Bourdain was a lover of life and proud advocate of experiencing world cultures. His own mother, Gladys Bourdain noted after her son's death that, "[Bourdain] is the last person in the world I'd imagine to do something like that." Close friend and fellow chef Eric Ripert also noted that Bourdain showed no signs of mental distress prior to his suicide, but was noticeably and suddenly distant during the week before.

I propose that the matter, which may have driven Bourdain to suicide, was none other than his relationship with girlfriend Asia Argento. For those who are unaware, Argento was a prominent figure in the Weinstein sex scandal along with Rose McGowan. Both women claimed to have been sexually harassed by Weinstein in the past, and have been powerful voices against him. Argento and Bourdain began their relationship in 2017, with Bourdain himself speaking out against Weinstein.

A look into the past of Argento, however, reveals that this woman is by no means a good person, much less one deserving of trust. Born in Italy, Argento enjoyed a career as an actress and director until having her first child in 2001, by Italian musician Mario Castoldi, out of wedlock. She married film director Michele Civetta in 2008, then divorced him in 2013 after birthing her second child. Not only is her relationship history telling of her character, but Argento's claims against Weinstein are also suspect as well. Argento has stated that she was sexually assaulted by Weinstein in the 1990s, but continued to have consensual, sexual relations with him over the next five years.

This behavior doesn't seem to match that of a person who was supposedly sexually assaulted— something that the Italian media was quick to pick up on, after which she was criticized for her account of said events. Argento then moved to Germany to escape what she called "victim blaming." This suspicious and dishonest nature culminated, in what I believe, is Argento's worst act of all, and one that ties directly to Bourdain's tragic suicide.

On June 9th, just a day after Bourdain's suicide, Metdaan.com published an article detailing Argento's reunion with Hugo Clément, a prominent French journalist credited for his coverage of events in Africa, such as famine in the Congo. In the article, Argento and Clément are described as a "happy couple," smiling and holding hands as they walked the streets of Rome. I ask you, what kind of woman would be so openly affectionate with a man other than her boyfriend? Much less during the same weekend of his death?

Asia Argento and Hugo Clement in Rome

No woman would be capable such a thing. A monster, on the other hand, who cares nothing for the men around her besides the utility they provide her, could easily do this much and more. The pattern throughout Argento's relationships couldn't be more clear. Musician. Filmmaker. Producer. Celebrity chef and travel enthusiast. Famous Journalist. Argento is clearly no stranger to monkey-branching onto successful men to get her way, using them to her advantage, then discarding them once their utility is exhausted.

In my opinion, it is very probable that Argento's dishonesty and complete lack of empathy towards Bourdain may have driven him to such a desperate act. A close friend of Bourdain told People Magazine that he was, "...madly in love with Asia," to a point that some of his friends became worried about just how love struck he was. It doesn't take a genius to realize that Argento's relationship with Clément was far closer than a professional one, and I'm sure that Bourdain came to the same conclusion. Whether or not it was this alone which drove Bourdain to suicide, I can't say for sure. What I will express, however, is my righteous anger toward Asia Argento, women who freely use and abuse men, and anyone who seeks to defend or shield them from criticism.

Among Argento's defenders is the aforementioned Rose McGowan, fellow Weinstein accuser and peddler of the new narrative that Argento and Bourdain shared an "open" relationship, no doubt in order to deflect from the obvious reality that Argento was simply cheating on Bourdain. Not that anything a woman convicted of cocaine possession says should be taken seriously, right? I'm tired of the endless deflection of blame away from women, and the persistent narrative that it's men's own masculinity which is causing male suicide rates to spike. As a man, I can say that we are not so easily broken. It is our biological instinct to protect, provide for, and shoulder the burdens of society, after all. When betrayed by the people we love and ignored by those from whom we seek help, however, we become disenchanted with the world around us, and can manifest our sorrow into destructive acts such as suicide.

My wish is that in time, society will realize that men, though we don't often show it, have a need for vulnerability too. We are forced to hide our shame, emotions, passions, and love from society, women, and other men to avoid being seen as weak and without value. With the current demonization of men and masculinity throughout society, I'm not sure I see much change on the horizon. This is why I encourage men to reject their use as tools of other men, women, and society as a whole by focusing on their own happiness and self-fulfillment. The tragic suicide of Mr. Anthony Bourdain is just the latest in an unsettling trend, one which will end only when men can look within themselves to unlock their greatest power: the strength to walk away.

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won't see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won't laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won't go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They'll miss you. They'll cry.

You won't fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won't get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won't be there to wipe away your mother's tears when she finds out that you're gone.

You won't be able to hug the ones that love you while they're waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won't be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won't find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won't celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won't turn another year older.

You will never see the places you've always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You'll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges, and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it's not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don't let today be the end.

You don't have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It's not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I'm sure you're no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won't do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you'll be fine." Because when they aren't, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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I Wish People Without Mental Illnesses Knew How Hard It Is To Reach Out For Help

Don't diagnose your friends, be there for them.

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We all have had our fair share of breakdowns — if you haven't, I think you're in for a good cry. Breaking down is nothing to be ashamed of but for people with mental illness, it is something that carries a heavy load with it. Growing up, I always showed signs of anxiety, it wasn't until my late high school years that I was diagnosed with a generalized anxiety disorder and moderate to severe depression. I was so ashamed. I felt like there was something wrong with me and that it needed to be fixed asap. So, I went and booked an appointment with a therapist and a psychiatrist.

After going through a few months without medicine and sole relying on therapy I realized that nothing was changing. My few new coping skills came in handy whenever I felt a surge of worry, but I was always in a state of up and down moods, and social impairment due to my mind always racing. After being prescribed a few medicines I, again, felt shame. Shameful in the fact that I couldn't handle this on my own. I was less than a year away from college and still having full meltdowns and constant crying that I pictured myself as a burden no one would want to put up with. Then it was like a new page in my life turned over.

My medicine started to work. I could feel my body take a sigh of relief as I could be independent and not have to call my mom every few minutes due to an anxiety attack bubbling up in my stomach. As I entered college, I was the happiest I have ever been. These people hadn't seen me at my worst. They didn't know that I used to not go to school because I couldn't get out of bed long enough to not cry. As my first semester began to approach my anxiety began to fade to the back of my mind as the excitement put itself full throttle. Freshman's ear started and my medication stayed the same, and I had less frequent visits with my therapist. I finally felt like an adult. That's when my strive towards greatness slowly pulled me back into a dark place.

The competition in college and the course work is 50% stress and 50% trying not to give up and drop out. I started to skip class and isolate myself from my friends. It also didn't help that the sun had disappeared, and the average was 27 degrees. I felt like the outside was finally representing what was going on in my mind. I tried to reach out to my friends but the advice they were giving was not something that was a positive impact.

They kept saying to meditate, focus on the good, and to "snap out of it."

They didn't understand, I didn't even understand what was happening.

I had fallen back down to where I had begun. Social media was not helping either. The amount of "throw away your meds, and go all natural." or "I got through my seasonal depression without any help," was just bombarding me with guilt and shame that I couldn't do it alone. I was spiraling and didn't know how to breathe or how to just be me again. That's when I did the most important thing I could do, I reached out for help. It's been a few weeks since I had put my pride to the side and did something that would help me.

Reaching out is never easy, and it was one of the hardest things to do. But now that I have reached out, I feel more adult and prouder than I ever did when I was pushing my mental health away. What I want people to know is that it's okay to ask for help, it's okay to take medication that is prescribed by a psychiatrist. But most importantly it's not okay to force your opinions on medicine or therapy or lack of emotion for others with mental illnesses. If you have a friend that is experiencing a down be there for them but don't be them for them if that makes sense. Mental illness is not something to shy away from, but something that should be a priority in your life.

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