Featured Posts

Stand Your Ground Documentary Trailer

Sixteen months ago I left Adelaide in a Mazda E1800 van to (quote) “spread my message and promote this thing in the big smoke”.

It’s taken a lot more time and produced a lot more anxiety than I’d anticipated but the opportunity that I’ve been preparing for has presented itself.

10 Years Later

(Warning: this blog post contains somewhat graphic content which may be distressing to some readers. If you are in crisis and need support please call Lifeline on 13 11 14).

Who Was Herman?

dad-and-lucy

An in-part illustration of the man.

Introducing Herman’s Hands

HERMANS-HANDS17

G’day readers,

Today is a good day.

After 6 months of hard work I am launching Herman’s Hands, my Mental Health Awareness and Suicide Prevention Clothing Brand.

About Vol. 2 – June 2016

brendan mcdonnell

Brendanmcdonnell.com has now been running for 1 year. I thought it was about time I updated the ‘About’ page! I’ve shared it here for those of you who’ve been following my journey from the start/ anyone who’s interested:

Create Dialogue – Inspire Change

brendan mcdonnell

I’ve been on a little hiatus from the blog but I’m back now and I’ve started phase 2 of awareness spreading. I’m moving into other avenues to raise awareness and spread my message – the next avenue being through something more visual and tangible.

G’Day G’Day I’m back in SA

Brendan McDonnellMy shed

I’m happy to announce that I’ve arrived back in Australia after 2 years away!

And coincidentally, today marks 8 years since the day my dad died from suicide.

It’s a pretty significant moment.

Finding the light

Brendan McDonnellPage 40 & 41 of FIRST Magazine Malta, July 2015 Edition

I’m not sure if I’m allowed to repost this, but here we go. This is an article about my blog and my life here in Malta written in FIRST Magazine which comes free in the Malta Independent Newspaper. It’s no cover of Rolling Stone but I don’t think I’ve ever been so proud of something. I feel like I’ve done some sort of justice –  the least I could do for my dad. Have a read and share it with your mum.

The suicide letter my father left behind. Addressed to me.

Brendan McDonnellMy dad’s arm resting on my head. My 12th birthday, 2004.

My mother found this letter in an A4 graphed notebook underneath my dad’s side of their bed a few days after he committed suicide. She very hesitantly handed it over to me not long after. I can’t imagine the feelings she was experiencing.

The first recollection of the day I found my dad’s dead body.

Brendan McDonnell.comMy dad circa 1983. Age 19 or 20. His powerful self, the way I remember him in my mind.

This is something I hold very close so I’d like to provide some context and clarify a few things. Only 3 people have read it until now. It isn’t eloquently written or by any means a masterpiece of modern literature, but I think it is relatively new information. It is the start of a boy’s process of overcoming his father’s suicide. It is the first ever recollection of the day I found my dad’s dead body exactly as it was written in my journal word for word. I am not sharing this to victimise myself or make anyone sad. I am not sad. I am happy. The point is, if I never had have recalled the day I found my dad’s dead body I wouldn’t be happy.