Given the target, and as a father of slightly-too-many daughters, this one was far too close to home. It's just too overwhelmingly sad.
So, sorry... but I'm just going to start writing and see where it takes me - and I doubt, once again, that it's going to be about video games. It'll pass though. It always does. Normal service will be resumed.
These days, if I ever get down I don't get down for very long. I'm fortunate in that I don't think I'm genetically predisposed towards depression. A bit of shitty work-related news, or money worries, and I can be fed up for a day or so, but it feels like a normal human response. I'm lucky, I guess. I've too many friends who suffer from mental health issues, and I feel powerless to help them.
There has been no real history of depression in my family, aside from some distant great-uncle who threw himself under a train. When I have been depressed, or when everything in my life has felt helpless or off-kilter, I can - with the benefit of hindsight - see that it's not without some root cause. Whenever I've been low in my life - even really low - I can see that it hasn't come from nowhere.
For a family that has managed to weather a number of real tragedies over the years, I think we have a noble capacity for picking ourselves up and moving forwards. At least, until the point that we can't.
I wanted to write about this subject during the recent Mental Health Awareness Week, but when it came to it... I just felt too exposed. I sort of resented myself for that - that there were so many people bravely discussing their own mental health history, including good friends of mine, and here I was... far too embarrassed or ashamed to do so.
It's that classic "Boys don't cry" thing that has been drummed into too many of us. Speaking as someone who was bullied as a kid, not making myself appear vulnerable is a coping strategy.
Well... I do cry, and yesterday - seeing the reports from Manchester - I fought those tears quite a bit. So, y'know... let's give this a go. Let's see if I can talk about this without bottling it.