Personal Views

Help from unexpected sources

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: (Published 18 October 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:1025
  1. Vindra Shenolikar, flexible trainee
  1. south Wales

    A year and a half ago my previously happy world came to an end. After finding out that my polycystric kidneys were failing, my surgeon husband walked out on me and our three sons. I was left alone, unemployed—I had given up my senior house officer post to look after my family—penniless, and absolutely terrified.

    There seemed no future for me. Suicide was a definite option. I planned it in detail. A cocktail of opiate, intravenous induction agent, and muscle relaxant. Easy to get hold of as an anaesthetist. It was a comfortable way to leave it all behind me.

    Help came from unexpected sources. Firstly, from my children. With their father effectively gone, I was all they had left. They were desperately worried about me, but showed tremendous courage during my many hospital visits. The nagging question of who would look after my boys in the event of my death kept me fighting on.

    Secondly, I had help from the local hospital where we had both worked and where …

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