Why does a 23 year old potential superstar kill herself?

I just read this article about a young 23 year old Olympic cyclist Kelly Catlin who killed herself. She had said that she felt her mind slipping; she could not focus on her schoolwork at Stanford, where she was a first-year graduate student in computational mathematics. She said her thoughts were “never-ending, spinning, spinning, spinning” as if they were “never at rest, never at peace.”She wrote that she cried about it, and that made her feel even worse. For years, Catlin was someone who took pride in holding back tears. Catlin told her sister, Christine, that seeking therapy meant she was weak and that she would rather suffer. She told her brother, Colin, that she thought she was going insane and she worried that she was a danger to others because she was filled with rage. She wrote that she was scared of dying. These are just some of the facts in this terrible saga of a young 23 year old, who could have reached untold heights – so what happened? These are the types of incidents that we, as counselors, therapists, psychologists, can actually do something about, and they just slip away. When you read just the highlights that I copied from the article, it is plain that this young lady was crying out for help. However, it appears that everyone missed it. At times, even when it is as plain as day, we still miss what is going on in someone’s head.

If you need assistance, if you know that things aren’t in the right places, please call out to someone, anyone.


Macur, J. (2019, April 8). Olympic Cyclist Kelly Catlin Seemed Destined for Glory. Then She Killed Herself. New York Times. Retrieved April 9, 2019, from https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/08/sports/kelly-catlin-death.html



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