Suicide of ME mum – lesson to be learnt
11 September 2008
THE SUICIDE of Nicola McNougher, a mum with ME, is heartbreaking. Nicola, like many sufferers of ME, found the pain and illness unbearable and claimed she was living “an inhuman existence”.
In the 25 per cent ME group we understand this only too well, as we represent the severely ill ME patients who are totally bedridden, some of whom are tube-fed and dependent on carers, and others who are lucky enough to be able to leave home in a wheelchair occasionally.
Despite the devastating symptoms, ME patients are given cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and told that nothing is really wrong with them, adding a burden of untold frustration and injustice to the hardship of physical disability.
Nicola’s death should arouse some guilt in the psychiatric profession, who, despite overwhelming evidence of immunological, neurological, endocrine, cardiac and gene expression involvement in the illness, insist that ME is a psychiatric condition and advise doctors to treat patients accordingly.
Lack of knowledge from the medical profession and lack of understanding from a society which has been told for years that ME is merely fatigue can make an unbearable situation truly intolerable.
The little-mentioned death toll from ME is not only from suicides, I can personally attest to this as two members of the 25 per cent ME group have died recently with ME on their death certificates.
ME sufferers need biomedical research and treatment, not merely counselling, if more deaths are to be avoided.
25% ME group
21 Church Street