As of December 18th 2017 the Kpop community was met with heartbreaking news. Lead vocalist from popular Korean boy band SHINee was found dead in his home from apparent suicide.
Kim Jonghyun struggled with depression and was not quiet about the pain he experienced, but still did his best to make his friends, family, and fans happy. His passing has touched the hearts of many throughout the Kpop community and I am sure as fans we are going through a hard time.
SHINee was one of the first bands I had ever listened to. I loved them so much and their music and personalities helped me out of my own depression. Their music made me happy and knowing that these wonderful talented men existed and dedicated their lives to making people smile made me believe that there was something to live another day for. As small as it may have seemed to others, the joy Jonghyun brought to people was real. It is normal to be affected by his death. Idols give so much of themselves to us and in return we love them and wish them the best. Somewhere between family and friendship the relationship we have with those we barely know resides and the feelings we have for them is genuine. I am tired of seeing people tell fans to ‘get over it’ or ‘you didn’t even know him’ and ‘he was just an idol’. For some people he meant so much more. While he may not have known us and we may have never shaken his hand, his death left us heartbroken and alone. The last thing these fans need is for people to tell them they are over-reacting. Please know that people are going through their own problems and don’t need people brushing off their grief as them being dramatic.
I hope that Korea’s view on mental illness and especially depression changes. Depression is something that can live within anyone. No matter how rich, famous, handsome etc. depression can find its way into even the happiest looking people. Do not over look sadness. Even if you think others are going through worse, your problems are just as important. Your struggles are just as important. Please know that there are many people to help you even if family, friends, and even doctors brush off what you say. I hope that fans realize our idols are human. They need love and support. It isn’t our job to criticize them for messing up a performance, for singing out of key, for making a mistake in their choreography. It is not our job to bring them down for ‘not improving’ or not living up to our own standards and expectations. It is not our job to judge them on gaining weight or losing weight, for taking breaks or for leaving companies or groups. It is our job as fans to support them or quietly stay out of their business. Idols will make mistakes. They will mess up, they will get sick, they will have problems. It is our job to recognize when they are not okay and to reassure them best we can that they are loved. Sending hate to anyone is uncalled for. Please know that there are many idols who have openly stated or hinted at their own mental health problems. Please send them good thoughts. Please send good thoughts to your friends, family, and loved ones who may be going through a hard time. Listen to people when they need someone to listen. You don’t know what you can do for someone, what your compassion and love can do for someone.
please remember to support SHINee in whatever direction they decide to take, whether that be as forward together as four, or on their own individual paths.
You made so many of us happy. I am sorry you felt like you were not good enough. I am sorry you felt alone. I wish I could have held your hand. I wish I could have given you a hug. I wish I could have helped you. Your memory will live on through your fans, your family, and your brothers. I hope that wherever you are you are finally at peace. Thank you for smiling even though you were suffering. Thank you for reaching out to those even though we couldn’t reach back. Thank you for giving so much of yourself selflessly.
-another extremely grateful Shawol
My condolences to his family and anyone who knew him personally.
My thoughts and prayers for the fans who are upset by his passing.
For anyone reading this who feels alone, know that you are loved. Your life is precious, you are precious.