Breaking the taboo surrounding suicide is the reason for the book Radio Silence…. The taboo around suicide is still great. The relatives left behind can’t talk about it and are left with unanswered questions, they are angry, sad and are often even ashamed. Incomprehension prevails, but above all feelings of guilt. But how do you break these taboos? Key words are openness, understanding and respect.

‘Radio Silence…. the suicide of a policeman’, is the imposing book about the suicide of a policeman, Ron Spijkerman, on the 16th of October 2009. Ron was the husband of Geertje Spijkerman (herself working as a confidential advisor within the police force) and the father of their children Mark and Willeke.
Son Mark: “My dad was not a sad case, he was a normal dad, just like other fathers.”
Daughter Willeke: “My dad was a tough guy, a tough policeman in a uniform.”

The mission
Because of the lack of understanding of other people, Geertje wanted to break the taboo surrounding suicide and depression. It became her mission! In the first place the book needed to offer tools for everyone who comes, or has come, into contact with suicide.

Part 1 tells the very personal story of Geertje and the two children (then 18 and 14 years old).
Part 2 goes into organisations and how they deal with depression and suicide.
Part 3 is a collection of accounts by external experts.

Reactions
Reactions followed almost immediately after Radio Silence had been published. Personally, by phone, by e-mail and letters. Often so special and so moving that they stopped you in your tracks. People explained that they now have more understanding for those who could no longer go on with life. Above all now they know how lonely and how all embracing the struggle had been, how lonely the ‘dark tunnel’ had been for the person concerned, longing for light at the end of the tunnel.

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