Olympic track cyclist Kelly Catlin died Friday at 23
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  1. #1
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    Olympic track cyclist Kelly Catlin died Friday at 23

    Posted here because of higher traffic.

    Her father, Mark Catlin, said in a letter to VeloNews that Kelly died by suicide.

    “Being a graduate student, track cyclist, and professional road cyclist can instead feel like I need to time-travel to get everything done. And things still slip through the cracks.
    This is probably the point when you’ll expect me to say something cliché like, “Time management is everything.” Or perhaps you’re expecting a nice, encouraging slogan like, “Being a student only makes me a better athlete!” After all, I somehow make everything work, right? Sure. Yeah, that’s somewhat accurate. But the truth is that most of the time, I don’t make everything work.”

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akirasho View Post
    Posted here because of higher traffic.

    Her father, Mark Catlin, said in a letter to VeloNews that Kelly died by suicide.
    Seems like she set very high standards for herself and perhaps that was a factor here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
    Seems like she set very high standards for herself and perhaps that was a factor here.
    Agree.

    So sad when a young person dies, condolences to her family.
    While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions. - Stephen R. Covey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
    Seems like she set very high standards for herself and perhaps that was a factor here.
    My own personal story is one of "highs" and "lows"

    Expectations were set high for me by family and by following a hyper achiever older Big Sis. Until my early 40's I battled demons as described in the VeloNews article (albeit, not as a cyclist). Then I stopped (hopping onto the Moving Zen Cycling Train).

    Overall, this has both frustrated some family members AND given me great peace of mind. Being content with the simpler things is not always easy in a goal driven society. Even today, I get those odd remarks such as "What happened to you? We expected you to (fill in the blank)" with an answer of just wanting to be content drawing sneers of confusion.

    Unfortunately, as a human being, I still want but I try as best I can within the parameters of our society, to limit them to those things which will bring joy regardless (after a Kumite match a few years back, my opponent praised my abilities and wanted to know my "secret" to winning. I told him, my goal wasn't to win... my goal was not to lose).

    I quote lyrics from a James Taylor song as a semi mantra. The secret to life is enjoying the passage of time. events from my early twenties made that seem impossible, but I survived long enuff...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akirasho View Post
    Unfortunately, as a human being...
    what?? i thought you were a bot. wtf?
    Yossarian: don't worry. nothing's going to happen to you that won't happen to the rest of us.

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    There is a substantial article about her today on Velonews. It indicated she attempted suicide in January. I guess all that talent and drive came with a cost. I feel especially bad for her familiarly as they knew she was struggling but were not able to help

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    Her stated three activities and accompanying goals that she was a full-time participant in were not sustainable by any normal person.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GlobalGuy View Post
    Her stated three activities and accompanying goals that she was a full-time participant in were not sustainable by any normal person.
    That's surely true, but a lot of top athletes and top achievers don't have a balanced personality, and can suffer the same way. Fellow Olympian Clara Hughes has said as much, and in response, launched a nation-wide discussion on mental health that's touched literally every Canadian on TV, at work, at school, billboards, everywhere.

    Besides that, how did doctors, trainers, colleagues, not see and deal with the clear and obvious serious post-concussion symptoms? They are like reading the textbook for look-for clues. Sports organizations, schools, watch for concussions like hawks, for the danger and for the lawsuits that will come. You have to ask why the professionals here didn't do anything or make any plan to reintroduce her to activity and to competition.

    If you didn't want to dig for it, here is the Velonews article: Inside Kelly Catlin’s amazing rise and tragic fall. This is terrible. I hope the family isn't blaming themselves for this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by .je View Post
    Besides that, how did doctors, trainers, colleagues, not see and deal with the clear and obvious serious post-concussion symptoms? They are like reading the textbook for look-for clues. Sports organizations, schools, watch for concussions like hawks, for the danger and for the lawsuits that will come. You have to ask why the professionals here didn't do anything or make any plan to reintroduce her to activity and to competition.
    That is an ongoing and complicated set of variables that prolly have no answers... or at least ones that satisfies all POVs. Fingers pointed are a way of resolving "legal" issues which often ignore the realities that such situations foster. If an able bodied person seeks suicide, prevention is extremely difficult (years ago, I lied my way out of a 72 hour hold and survived by the unexpected arrival of a family member who'd hopped the next inbound flight).

    I certainly hope that some knowledge from this event may aid others, but such is the nature of this beast... it can overwhelm in a moment.

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    wonder if drug abuse (not necessarily PEDs) played a factor?

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    Quote Originally Posted by aclinjury View Post
    wonder if drug abuse (not necessarily PEDs) played a factor?
    I'm not trying to be flippant, but I've known many distance riders (my younger self included) that craved exercise induced endorphins. While studies do not link this to an addiction, many seek the rush. If you add an overachieving personality and a decreased level of activity (real or perceived) it can backlash to varied levels of depression (I ain't no doc but I've had these "symptoms").

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akirasho View Post
    I'm not trying to be flippant, but I've known many distance riders (my younger self included) that craved exercise induced endorphins. While studies do not link this to an addiction, many seek the rush. If you add an overachieving personality and a decreased level of activity (real or perceived) it can backlash to varied levels of depression (I ain't no doc but I've had these "symptoms").
    there are quite a lot of stories of obsessive pro- and Olympic-level athletes who were/are sucessful at one point, and now they've either retired or finding it hard to stay at the top (could be due to injuries) and they go into depression and start to abuse drugs to cope with the depression. And drugs can really mess up a depressed person's brain.

    I don't know the state of mind of Kelly, and we'll likely never know since it's unlikely that anyone close to her will divulge. But when a seemingly normal 23 yr old person commits suicide, it's not far-fetched to ask if drugs are involved.

  13. #13
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    She apparently had a fall and got a concussion which may have played a role according to a story I read.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aclinjury View Post
    wonder if drug abuse (not necessarily PEDs) played a factor?
    You're talking about someone who wouldn't accept anesthesia when the doctors set her broken arm for fear it might cause an adverse test result.

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    Sounds more like it was family abuse. She attempted in January, where was her support?
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    We see ourselves as "free will" beings and many will refute that our conscious and unconscious minds are fundamentally at the mercy of brain chemistry and a few hundred million years of evolution.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akirasho View Post
    My own personal story is one of "highs" and "lows"

    Expectations were set high for me by family and by following a hyper achiever older Big Sis. Until my early 40's I battled demons as described in the VeloNews article (albeit, not as a cyclist). Then I stopped (hopping onto the Moving Zen Cycling Train).

    Overall, this has both frustrated some family members AND given me great peace of mind. Being content with the simpler things is not always easy in a goal driven society. Even today, I get those odd remarks such as "What happened to you? We expected you to (fill in the blank)" with an answer of just wanting to be content drawing sneers of confusion.

    Unfortunately, as a human being, I still want but I try as best I can within the parameters of our society, to limit them to those things which will bring joy regardless (after a Kumite match a few years back, my opponent praised my abilities and wanted to know my "secret" to winning. I told him, my goal wasn't to win... my goal was not to lose).

    I quote lyrics from a James Taylor song as a semi mantra. The secret to life is enjoying the passage of time. events from my early twenties made that seem impossible, but I survived long enuff...
    It takes a lot of courage to follow that path under those circumstances! Glad to hear you have found a peaceful existence.

    My condolences to the Caitlin family.
    There I was...

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    So, what I will offer... It is always the cessation of suffering. Letting the act vanish quietly is important. I send love and support to her family... But as a public health concern, we just let this go. We will miss her. She deserves our love and respect. She may not warrant a tribute that might make more desperate people consider the benefits of the attention... As strange as it sounds, it is important, and it is very important, that we realize it is important to grieve and recognize suffering, but it is equally important not to glorify self harm.
    To date, philosophers have merely interpreted the world in various ways. The point however is to change it.

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