9PM - The 22 pistol
I've been out on errands since about 10am. Just got home. Mr. HP my computer has been in the shop all day for repairs. I'm really too tired to make a blog post. But I wanted to respond to the many ShoutBox posts about yesterday's pic of Dave's teenage friends, Andrew and Justin with the pistol on the kitchen table.
When I took that pic, I did not recognize that the 22 pistol that Dave used in his suicide was on the table. I personally am not at all sensitive to this pistol. I do not intend to drop the gun into a big pool of wet concrete as was suggested by some readers. Or destroy the gun. It is worth about $750! There is no ammunition in Dave's house.
This gun did not leap up, point itself at David and pull its trigger. David did that himself.
The gun arrived today in the US mail and was sent to me by the Calaveras County Coroner. When kids Andrew and Justin knocked on the door and asked to visit with me, it never occurred to me that the gun on the table was a problem. I still feel that the gun being on the table was not a problem. When Justin asked to look at the pistol, I examined the gun which I knew to be unloaded, pulled back the slide to make sure that there was no round in the chamber, and let him look at it.
I am a trained shooter. As a boy, my father who was a highly talented pistol shooter, taught me gun safety. My Dad is Daniel Lehrer. Dad was a Certified Pistol Instructor. He was a member of the California State Team three years and had his expenses paid to Camp Perry to compete in the National Matches three times [link].
My Dad was an NRA life member and a pistol lifetime master. My Dad taught me all about gun safety and I have not forgotten what he carefully taught me.
Being open and emotional/psychological health
As you may know, I am extremely high on being open about everything. Awhile back, some readers wondered about me talking to eleven year old "J" who was a foster kid with my son, David. Some readers offered that it was inappropriate to talk to an eleven year old child about my son's suicide.
In fact, in my very strong opinion, it is just the opposite. Being closed and secretive about what goes on in life can very possibly have serious negative affects. Once a child has been made to understand that there are things that are off-limits to being talked about, that there is shame connected to some things, then that child may very possibly grow into an adult who fears being open about himself.
There are problems which MUST be openly discussed in order to find resolution. There are problems that must be brought to a therapist or psychiatrist. If as a child, a person is taught there are some things that are off-limits and are shameful, then professional help may very well be avoided because of the shame of it all. Such a thing as this leads to disastrous behavior.
In our life, there should be absolutely nothing that each of us can do which we should be ashamed about. We may make terrible mistakes. If we openly face those mistakes, accept them, get proper help dealing with them, then we are on the way to being healed.
When we hide those mistakes. Fail to get help dealing with them. Shamefully keep family, friends and all who care about us from knowing. What happens then? What happens to a person who is sick and does not go the doctor?