Kate Spade’s Death Proves That Success Is Not The Key To Happiness

Trigger warning: This article contains content referencing suicide. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or you can text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741. You are never alone.
kate spade
YouTube / Wall Street Journal

When I heard about the tragic suicide of Kate Spade just this past Tuesday, I was devastated.

Because like many others who know the pain and agony that can come with anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, and any mental illness for that matter, any news of suicide, no matter who it is, can hit very close to home.

Unlike many others who criticize people who commit suicide as selfish, or even cowardly for not getting the help they need, I saw it for the tragedy that it is because from experience, I know that no matter how big her empire is or how much money she attained, pain and mental illness doesn’t pick and choose who to affect.

While hurtful and ignorant comments are unfortunately expected when it comes to suicide and mental illness, what shocked and somewhat rattled me was the comments I would see on Twitter from some people who wondered how celebrities or moguls can attain so much wealth and success, but still resort to suicide.

My answer?

Money, fame, success, or even an empire that inspires and makes many women feel beautiful, does not buy happiness.

And she should not be judged for that as well.

The problem with society and our way of thinking and the reason why we can’t look at the bigger picture when it comes to suicide and mental illness is that all too often we just focus on the outward and what we can see with people.

“She had money, her brand is amazing, it’s happy and bubbly, so why wasn’t that enough for her?”

However, why can’t we get to the point where when tragedies like this happen, we sympathize with the pain she felt instead of what she left behind?

When we actually see celebrities and icons take their life, I think we should see it as, “Wow, they are human, with human issues just like me and I hope we can raise more awareness or learn more about how he or she was struggling.”

It’s simply time that we stop judging people who commit suicide as well as equate their status with how they should live life and emotionally.

At the end of the day, rich or not, we are people. And mental illness definitely does not discriminate. 

I hope moving forward, we always remember the bigger picture and the larger issue when it comes to suicide, depression, and mental health.

I hope we move past judgment and stop looking into things that really don’t matter.

What matters is that it is ok that you are successful and feel pain too.

It is okay that you aren’t perfect.

You are human.

And maybe Kate did truly feel that people would judge her for being successful, yet depressed.

Success is not the key to happiness and shouldn’t be a reason why someone is immune to suicide or sadness.

Because in reality, no matter who you are, pain exists. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

More From Thought Catalog