PDA

View Full Version : How do you handle suicides


Ron Snowden
10 December 2006, 10:24 PM
I am developing a website that will be viewed by many family members; some of which have children or spouses that have committed suicide. I've listed them as "suicide victims" as they were developed; but that may not be the best way to handle the matter. I'm interested in what some of you are doing--particularly where close family are still living. Thanks

dseifert
10 December 2006, 10:38 PM
I have some similar situations. Not suicides but sensitive matters. I keep all information in my notes and bracket them with sensitive material delimiters as instructed in the manual. I dont include any info on my website that I think will be a problem for anyone to view.

I guess it's up to you as to how much you wanna throw out there.

linders
11 December 2006, 10:17 AM
I have some similar situations. Not suicides but sensitive matters. I keep all information in my notes and bracket them with sensitive material delimiters as instructed in the manual. I dont include any info on my website that I think will be a problem for anyone to view..

I am having a problem with the brackets. I put them around the sensitive material and it still shows up. I have read the manual and don't see what I'm doing wrong.

Karen Peters
11 December 2006, 10:17 AM
I leave it out of the computer completely. I'm always worried that a wrong keystroke will put it out there. If someone needs to know, they should be close enough to the family to be told. If not, it's not their business.

fjvanbodegom
11 December 2006, 12:03 PM
The 'Sensitivity' brackets works perfect ! !
Might be you forget to check a few things.
First go to Options -> Reports -> Sensitive Data
Choose the brackets you want, but (and think that could be the reason)
don't FORGET to check the checkmark : Exclude Sensitive Data
Be aware the information that is added, where it is excluded

Then when you make a report: don't FORGET to check: Use Privacy Filtering

David G. Kanter
11 December 2006, 01:17 PM
. . .Then when you make a report: don't FORGET to check: Use Privacy FilteringJust to be clear, the Privacy Filter is independent from the exclusion of Sensitive Data function. As pointed out, in Options->Reports:Sensitive Data you enable/disable the exclusion of data you've identified as Sensitive by having enclosing that data in the Sensitive Data Delimiters--which you've chosen in that Option, too.

Independently, you define "Who is private" and "What to do with private people" in Options->Reports:Privacy Filter--and then enable/disable the application of that filter using the option (if available) of "Use Privacy Filtering" when you Create the Sheet or Report, or generate a GEDCOM export. Search the Manual for "privacy filter" and select "1. Report Options, Privacy Filter".

Tom Robinson
11 December 2006, 10:13 PM
Just to be clear, the Privacy Filter is independent from the exclusion of Sensitive Data function.
Another option is to set up a new Notes field, and be specific about what (if any) reports it appears in. I think 'Secret' is the default Reunion name for this particular notes field.

At one stage I had a few Secret Note fields filled with asterisks, that way if I ever ran a report including the field by mistake, it would really stand out.

Suicide is something which is generally taboo, which makes it even harder for people feeling that way, so I figure if you can get people talking about it (i.e. by subtly mentioning it in your reports), so much the better.

marnen
12 December 2006, 12:43 AM
I leave it out of the computer completely. I'm always worried that a wrong keystroke will put it out there.
Bad idea, I think. Put it in...that way it will be in the database. The privacy filters are pretty airtight; if you're that worried about it, you can always check through the generated report or GEDCOM file.
If someone needs to know, they should be close enough to the family to be told. If not, it's not their business.
I fail to see why suicide is at all something worth hushing up, and I think that it's a bit arbitrary to decide that a cause of death is no one's business. Genealogical research is based on sharing data. Withholding data flies in the face of that.

Admittedly, I'm talking through my hat here; I have no suicides in my family AFAIK. But if I did, I'd enter them in the DB, and they'd be identified as such in reports.

Kim
12 December 2006, 01:55 AM
I agree with putting the cause of death in the database...whatever the cause. But I also would be selective in what reports I include it in, as I would any cause of death. For reports for relatives I would probably include just about everything. But for a general web report 'open to the public' I do not put in a lot of information. I prefer to stick to basics....vital statistic type info. I figure anyone who really has a reason to know, will contact me and I can decide then if sharing 'sensitive' data is appropriate. And a case can be made that many causes of death are sensitive. Medical family histories should be considered sensitive, and the privacy of living descendants should be protected.

Grampa Mike
12 December 2006, 06:22 PM
If things are a matter of public record, why should they be omitted from the data base?

There is a case in my family (The Confederate side, not the Yankee side where I fit in) where the relative killed his wife's alledged lover.

Reading the newspaper accounts it sounds like he hit the guy with everythng in the house. He was acquited of murder.

Sometime later he killed his 9 year old son, tried to kill his wife and then commited suicide.

This is all public record, so why hide it? I find it interesting, not something to be ashamed of.

dseifert
12 December 2006, 07:38 PM
This is all public record, so why hide it? I find it interesting, not something to be ashamed of.


I think the concern was with living relatives and their privacy being respected.

martha
13 December 2006, 02:41 AM
I can understand why suicide might be a sensitive issue. The taking of life, even your own, is morally highly questionable.

That said, the only suicides I have in my family are people who killed themselves as the Nazis were knocking down their doors. I include all of them in my database and mark them with a special sign that I use to denote Shoah murder victims. And then I thank God that they killed themselves, thus avoiding further humiliation and suffering.

Martha

xejn
16 December 2006, 02:37 PM
I can understand why suicide might be a sensitive issue. The taking of life, even your own, is morally highly questionable.

That said, the only suicides I have in my family are people who killed themselves as the Nazis were knocking down their doors. I include all of them in my database and mark them with a special sign that I use to denote Shoah murder victims. And then I thank God that they killed themselves, thus avoiding further humiliation and suffering.

I have two who commited suicide, both are reported to have had diagnoses of cancer back at a time when there was little that could be done.

For now, I am using the privacy brackets and only publishing to direct relative. At some point, after I have more data and can verify the story, I may publish it more widely.

Under Martha's relatives conditions, I'd publish too.

Michael

msdebbiep
19 December 2006, 07:27 AM
my husband committed suicide. The information is in the data. It's how he died. Fact. This piece of information provides a lot of insight into the "life and times" of one of the family tree members. I, obviously know and understand the "why" behind his choice, but, for other suicides, we can only guess that they struggled with something in their lives and finally gave up the battle. It also tells a bit about the survivors, as we piece together what their lives looked like after the event.

It's our history; whether we like it our not. Whether you share that info with others is, of course, your own decision

Debbie

marnen
19 December 2006, 05:21 PM
Well said, Debbie.

doug henderson
20 December 2006, 03:48 PM
my husband committed suicide. The information is in the data. It's how he died. Fact. This piece of information provides a lot of insight into the "life and times" of one of the family tree members...My Ggrandfather faked his suicide. He later turns up 3 counties away. He abandonded a wife and 2 kids. But I think we have to acknowledge this fact, it happened. It is the reason for the disfunction that lasted in my family for 2 generations. I have 1 aunt who refuses to believe what I've found, but that's her decision. What happened 100 years ago, happened. We can't change history, no matter how ugly it may be.
my 2 cents

xejn
28 December 2006, 04:25 PM
Followup to my sucide relative. I got my great grandfather's death certificate. It confirms both that he committed sucide and his reason for doing so

Jerry Nutter
20 August 2008, 10:04 AM
I think it's a question of not wanting to alienate your relatives! (As well as keeping the flow of information turned on.) In my own case, a great-granduncle shot himself during the heat wave of 1919. Apparently, 'heat suicides' were fairly common in those days (must of been those dark wool suits!), but actually he'd had a nervous breakdown the year before and was a bachelor and an unemployed carpenter with failing eyesight. But since it all happened so long ago, there's no one who's really going to take offense.