Kathy Mullen never thought suicide would affect her family. After the death of her only child, Mullen made it her mission that other families would not endure the same pain. She recently founded the non-profit Mullen’s Miracles.
Mullen’s Miracles nourishes the needs of those in crisis. “Our mission is to Provide Individualized Options, Respective Support Systems and Support Provisions to those on the edge, those assisting others in crisis and for those that have lost a loved one to suicide,” said Mullen, an Alpharetta resident.
Mullen’s Miracles was born out of the loss of Mullen’s son, Eric to suicide. Fourteen months before Eric died, he purchased his first house at age 25 in Iowa where he was living with his father. While moving his belongings out of his dad’s home, his father had a massive heart attack. Eric administered CPR. His father was rushed to the hospital and placed on life support.
“Eric had to make the decision to take (his dad) off life support,” said Mullen who was divorced from Eric’s father.
Mullen traveled to Iowa to help her son.
“It was a really difficult thing and a challenge to try to save your dad. And then be proud of your house and not have your dad ever see your house. And then have to make the decision to take your dad off life support. You never know how that’s going to turn out,” Mullen said.
“It was a lot for a 25-year-old who was extremely sensitive,” Mullen said.
Although Eric thought he was doing well, he fell into depression and could not see a therapist in IA for 3 weeks.
He came to GA seeking help. He traveled to IA one last time to sell his father’s truck.
“He didn’t come back. He took his life. It’s been a struggle as you can imagine,” Mullen said.
The wound brought Mullen wisdom. “I knew I can’t fix everything but I could do the best I could so that other families didn’t have to go through this,” Mullen said.
Helping others in crisis became her mission. “Even though there’s support out there it might not be the right support for the individual, and it’s expensive. I’ve spent a fortune,” Mullen said.
Through the non-profit, Mullen's goal is to provide assistance like a directory of therapists at a discounted rate, education about how to help someone in crisis, getting rid of the stigma of mental illness, and being an advocate.
“When you’re in crisis, you don’t have time to learn about it. Most people don’t think suicide is going to hit their family. When it does, it changes your life forever,” Mullen said.
Mullen wants people to understand that depression is real. “Depression is critical. Not having the right resources is critical. Trauma is critical. We need to address those issues before they are a problem,” Mullen said.
“Don’t underestimate when someone’s in trouble. Take suicide seriously. And depression seriously. Get help however you can. Know that there are people who are willing to help,” Mullen said.
Article by Sally Litchfield c/o Marietta Talks - click to see the archived story