Mosgiel woman Nikki Cockburn has written a book about her
experience of her partner's suicide. Photo by Linda
In the 12 years since her partner's death, it has become
easier to talk about suicide, Mosgiel woman Nikki Cockburn
Miss Cockburn has written about her experience of suicide in
Through the Other Side, which will be launched at the
Mosgiel Library next week.
She had always enjoyed writing and the process helped her own
She had not intended to publish the short book, but was urged
to by friends.
She had written Through the Other Side gradually over
the 12 years since the death of her partner, whom she does
not name in the self-published book.
The book covers their relationship, her partner's death aged
19 and her recovery since.
''Whenever I had a feeling or a memory, I would write it
down, rather than keep it inside.''
Already, she says, it has had an impact.
About 120 copies have been bought, including about 15 in
She has been stopped in the street in Mosgiel by people
wanting to talk about it.
''I have always said that if I could help one person, then my
job is done.''
These days, there was greater awareness of depression and
''Even 12 years ago, when he died, it wasn't as broadcast as
it is now.
''It's more recognised now - depression as an illness.''
Many people were frightened of mental health conditions such
as depression, she believed.
Greater awareness had helped, but suicide statistics were
still far too high.
Many people were still unaware of the support groups and
services available to them.
''Don't be afraid to ask for help, because it's not a sign of
weakness, it's a huge sign of strength.''
Her partner had been depressed, and had said he would take
his life, but she did not take it seriously.
A local GP will speak at the book launch, on July31.
• To attend, RSVP by July 28 by calling Miss Cockburn on
Where to get help
• Lifeline: 0800-543-354.
• Depression Helpline: 0800-111-757 (8am-midnight).
• Healthline: 0800-611-116.
• Samaritans: 0800-211-211 and (04) 473-9739.
• Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508-828-865.
• Youthline: 0800-376-633, free text 234 or email
• What's Up: 0800-942-8787 (for 5-18-year-olds;
• Kidsline: 0800-543-754 (for children 14 and under;
• In an emergency: Call 111.