One story struck me most this week.

It was not the snap election in the UK. It was not the posturing of North Korea and America's response. It was not the firing of Bill O'Reilly.

It was not the historic pay equity deal, or the immigration tweaks and debate.

It was Prince Harry's remarkable 27 minute interview with the Telegraph where he told of 20 years of grief and depression.

It began with his mother Diana's untimely death, his recovery, and acceptance in recent years.

It was a story that many can relate to. A story of loss and regret and an unhealthy response.


But this was a Prince of England. A member of a firm that values image, duty and a stiff upper lip. And here he was telling the truth.

We remember the little boy marching with his brother and uncles behind his mother's coffin. The boy who broke all our hearts.

The boy who developed into a troubled man and then over recent years gained our respect. Here he was revealing his 2 decades of grief.

His interview was remarkable because it was so candid, because it was so honest.

It came during a week when we were debating our honesty over the difficult subject of suicide.

13 Reasons Why is a Netflix TV series that featured graphic representations of a character's suicide. We hear Hannah's 13 reasons why she felt she could not go on.

It culminates in a final episode that shows - in great detail - her suicide.

This week I opened the talkback lines to ask if we thought it was appropriate. My first caller was a father, who has a daughter who was suicidal a year ago.

He had no idea of the programme until he came in one night to see his daughter watching the graphic final scenes. He was horrified.

But most who called who had seen it said that it was graphic but illuminating as to the factors that cause teens to take their life.

Late in the week the Mental Health Foundation finally commented saying they were uncomfortable with the series and the glamourisation of suicide.

They'd rather the brutal truth stayed hidden. The chief censor is now thinking of putting a rating on the programme even though it's been out for a month and millions have seen it.

Has he been under a rock for the past month? It's a bit late now, fair to say.

In New Zealand we have media conventions on suicide. We don't show it, we don't talk about it, we report no suspicious circumstances in a sudden death.


It's all to stop copycat suicides.

Well, looking at our heartbreaking youth suicide statistics you'd have to say that approach isn't working.

It's time for a national talk about attitudes towards talking about suicide.

The tragedy that dare not speak its name. We're pussy-footing around and using language that hides the reality.

We're too scared to confront the reality that faces so many of our young and not so young.

If Prince Harry proved anything in his conversation over grief, death, mental illness and depression it's that honesty is always the best option.

So it is with the awful culmination of all those feelings, suicide. Let's just talk about it openly instead of behind euphemisms.

Where to get help:


0800 543 354 (available 24/7)

Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)

Youthline: 0800 376 633

Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)

Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)

Depression helpline: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)

Rainbow Youth: (09) 376 4155

Samaritans 0800 726 666

Your local Rural Support Trust - 0800 787 254 (0800 RURAL HELP)

Alcohol Drug Helpline (open 24/7) - 0800 787 797. You can also text 8691 for free.

For more information, contact the Mental Health Foundation's free Resource and Information Service on 09 623 4812.

If it is an emergency and you feel like you or someone else is at risk, call 111.