Kay Bone (right) with ADDISS founder and director, Andrea Bilbow. In memory of her son, Sean, Kay is spearheading a campaign to RAISE FUNDS TO SUPPORT ADDISSPlease support the campaign if you can; even a small donation will mean a lot to Kay and to our friends in the UK, where ADDISS has been a rock of support, education, and advocacy for many years through the UK and Europe as well.
It is impossible to spend even a few minutes with Kay Bone and not be struck by the kindness in her eyes, the intelligence of her words, and the gentleness of her humble manner. To then learn of the tragedy suffered by Kay, her husband Paul, and their extended family—the loss of Sean Bone, who at age 21, impulsively took his life—one is all the more struck by her enduring sweetness, compassion, and generous determination to prevent other families from suffering such a fate.
Please consider making a secure donation to the ADDISS fund in his honor, at left. No amount is too small, and you’ll have an opportunity to leave a note (anonymous, if you like) in support of ADHD awareness in UK and around the world.
I met Kay in March 2009 in London, where we were both speaking at the ADDISS conference on ADHD. With a dozen others, we had a lovely dinner, with Kay giving little hint of the moving keynote she would give the next morning, a talk based on her son Sean’s tragic death just a few months earlier. Sean had ADHD. He also had a loving family, plenty of friends, and an array of good qualities. But in one impulsive moment, his emotional pain in the aftermath of a relationship breakup met opportunity, and he took his life.
Untreated or under-treated ADHD is, in fact, a risk factor in suicide. And yet, can we call it suicide—can we say these people truly wanted to end their lives, that they fully understood the consequences of their actions—or was it ADHD-related impulsivity and a chronic inability not to see past “right now” that led to their death? Each case is different, no doubt, but in Sean’s case, well, Kay tells the story best.
I asked Kay if I could share her family’s story with you, and she graciously agreed. If you would like to honor Sean’s memory, and in the process help ADDISS help individuals and families affected by ADHD, please donate to the campaign Kay Bone has started on justgiving.com
A CELEBRATION OF SEAN’S LIFE
By Kay Bone
Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you are going to get. It is picked and chosen for you. I was given Sean with the soft centre. I could only have him for a while.
Sean came in a specially wrapped box as he had ADHD (Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder). Sean was diagnosed at 9 years old, and it was a very new diagnosed condition and not many people knew about. Sean’s headmaster at the time was going to be my first target for “education.”
Sean was often labelled and blamed for things he didn’t do, as he had a motor that couldn’t stop running, like a car with no brakes that kept on traveling. The hyperactivity led to not being able to sit still in school, being the target of bullying and having no friends. As parents, it was heartbreaking, but my mission was to help people understand it and my husband Paul’s was to protect. Read the rest of this entry »