Grieving mum speaks out after son loses depression battle
THE mother of a young man who took his own life has spoken about her son's experience, in the hopes that it may help just one more person dealing with the "cancer of the mind" known as depression.
After an ongoing battle with the mental illness, Debie Bazley's son Brandon took his own life on Friday, June 2, 2017, at just 24 years of age.
Mrs Bazley said Brandon had struggled on and off with aspects of depression since his father died of cancer in January, 2010.
"With Brandon, there were a lot of repressed emotions and issues born from his dad's death at the beginning of his senior year at school," Mrs Bazley said.
"He was always questioning what his dad would have wanted him to do or looking for his dad's approval, but he couldn't get that.
"Midway through 2016, during his final semester of tertiary studies, a lot of those memories resurfaced and he was in a very negative head space," she said.
"His brain would never switch off. It was leading him to a dark place - at times, he would feel like he was a completely different person."
Brandon did seek help and had been seeing a psychologist and a wellness practitioner, in addition to constantly speaking with his mother about his mental state.
But unfortunately, Brandon didn't give himself enough time to beat the darkness that depression cast over his mind.
"He had so much to offer the world, but he couldn't see it," Mrs Bazley said.
"I just wish he'd seen how much he was valued and loved by everybody.
"People do need to reach out and ask for help, and the thing is, Brandon did do that - he did seek help.
"But the biggest thing is, you need to give yourself time.
"Brandon didn't really give himself much time," she said.
Brandon was born in Dalby and went to school here until the beginning of Year 10, when he moved to Brisbane with his mother and sisters.
He will be remembered for his creativity, charisma, and a smile that could "light up the room".
"I'd like him to just be remembered for being him - a wonderfully talented person, just taken too soon," Mrs Bazley said.
"He was the sort of person who always inspired those around him. He always had an infectious grin and a cheeky sense of humour," she said.
Mrs Bazley hopes that Brandon's story will help others reach out and stay strong in the midst of mental illness.
"There are just so many people battling depression. It's like a cancer of the mind," Mrs Bazley said.
"Know that there is an end. Even when the darkness feels like it is overpowering you, there is always going to be that little shining light that you need to hold onto with all your might.
"If Brandon's death means anything, it will be to help save the life of even just one person facing the same battle.
"Help them to know it's okay to reach out," she said.
If you or someone you know is struggling, please call Lifeline on 131114.