A young student ‘Googled how to kill himself’ before sending a message to his girlfriend to say goodbye.
Connel Arthur was worried about being made homeless days before Christmas when he decided to take his own life, according to his devastated mum.
Nathalie Arthur has now condemned sick suicide websites after she discovered Connel had been able to access specific information about techniques to kill himself in the days leading up to his death.
The 21-year-old, who was a student at Glasgow University, was found dead in the room where he’d been staying in Reykjavik, Iceland, on December 19.
His family said the talented guitar player and outdoorsman had never shown signs of depression or any other mental health issues but had been worried about having nowhere to live, reports the Daily Record.
His mother recalled:
He had struggled to find accommodation in Iceland and I think becoming homeless was a massive concern to him.
I had a funny inkling that something wasn’t right, so I’d messaged him a couple of times that week asking if he was OK and he said he was fine. I don’t think he was reachable by that point – he knew what he was going to do.
Nathalie, a supermarket worker who lives in Bannockburn near Stirling, said:
Connel was full of life which is why this is all such a shock. He didn’t suffer from depression as far as we were concerned or aware.
He’d moved to Iceland to do an erasmus year for his masters degree and had made lots of friends and got a job behind a bar.
We were supposed to be going out to see him for New Year. We had a four day holiday booked from December 28 to January 1.
He messaged me on the day he died asking me when we were going out there but he never got my replies.
Connel’s family were able to fly out to Rekjavik after receiving the horrific news to collect his body, but were left shocked and angry after finding dark suicide websites on Connel’s internet search history.
There is one main thing I want to address – Connel had been Google searching how to kill himself and was easily able to find the information.
We went out there thinking it was a spur of the moment thing but there were all these searches from the days before.
There was a big fuss about eating disorder websites and self harm forums a few years ago, so why are these suicide websites not talked about and why is it available?
It’s not okay. This information should not be there for people to access.
Nathalie has decided to speak out in a bid to raise awareness about mental health and suicide, particularly affecting young men between the ages of 20-34.
Go and talk to yours kids. Get them to talk to their friends. Ask them if they’re OK. Send a text, take somebody out for a coffee – that can buy precious time.
The chaplain said Connel could have thought about doing this on many occasions in the past and something might have stopped him – a phone call, anything.
She added: ‘He had no outward history of depression. He loved life.’
A memorial service will be held for Connel at Glasgow University Chapel on January 27 and will be live streamed to his friends in Iceland.
The family are now raising funds in his memory on GoFundMe which will be given to various mental health charities.
Suicide is the leading cause of death among young people aged 20-34 years in the UK, with around three times as many men dying as a result of suicide compared to women.
It’s also the leading cause of death for men under 50 in the UK.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues and want to speak to someone in confidence, please don’t suffer alone. Call Samaritans for free on their anonymous 24-hour phone line on 116 123.