Marie Osmond’s Adoptive Son Commits Suicide, and There Are Questions…
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There is a big deal being made of the suicide Friday of Marie Osmond’s 18-year-old son, Michael Blosil. Blosil had jumped off the roof of the high-rise apartment building in Los Angeles where he lived after leaving a suicide note and a text message to a female friend. In it, Blosil allegedly wrote that he could not fit in and had no friends. Family spokesmen said that Blosil had suffered from depression and had been in and out of drug and alcohol rehab over the years, so appropriate news stories in the media have made sympathetic noises about depression among young people. Osmond friend and face of Entertainment Tonight Mary Hart’s insider report on CBS’ The Early Show seemed to slather on yet another layer of frosting on this sad event.
I wasn’t half so annoyed over the media ministrations over this young man’s death when I heard this morning that Blosil was attending the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. Bells went off. Suddenly, it wasn’t looking so sickly sweet any more about this promising young man taking his own life. So I went over to The Advocate, one of the leading gay news organization in the country and came up with this.
Osmond made headlines last year when she opened up about her lesbian daughter. Tabloids had run stories suggesting Osmond was ashamed by her daughter, but the entertainer told a Los Angeles radio station that despite her Mormon upbringing, she is extremely supportive of and close to her daughter Jessica and that reports to the contrary were untrue.
“You know on those types of things I’m very supportive,” she said at the time. “When it comes to marriage, I think that civil rights need to be for all.”
Hmmmm…this is a refreshing statement to make from a devout Mormon mother; however, one adoptive child being gay is one thing; but what if it were two children who were gay? Would she have accepted that, too? (Osmond, 50, and her soon-to-be ex-husband Brian Blosil have six adoptive children–the eldest is the son Osmond had with her first husband, Stephen Craig–and two children on their own.)
Gay teenagers have even more of a problem with depression than straight teens, especially around issues of social as well as familial acceptance. More often than not, if they are depressed, they also tend to engage in addictive behaviors, such as alcoholism, overeating, and drugs. About overeating, I am reminded of Luther Vandross. This ain’t something that just white people undergo.
Blosil seemed to have overcome his troubles, including witnessing the deterioration of his parents’ marriage, and graduated from high school last year. In Touch magazine interviewed two young people who were present at the time Blosil ended his life, and they are just as baffled:
[…]”I am completely crushed and taken by complete surprise,” says his closest confidante, Ruth Ann, to whom Michael had written his last words.
Despite reports that he suffered from severe depression, his loved ones insist that Michael was always in good spirits. “He was so jolly all of the time. He’s probably the funniest, happiest guy I’ve ever met in my life. It’s something I would never expect from somebody like him,” his roommate, Sean Srnik, says. “Michael was far from friendless. His smile was contagious, and the impact he had on even casual acquaintances was beyond description. We will all miss him very much,” a grieving Ruth Ann echoes.
Sean, Michael’s classmate at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in LA, adds that nothing seemed unusual the night the 18-year-old leapt to his death from their apartment balcony on February 26. “He walked in the door, and I was hiding behind the refrigerator. I popped out, and I was like ‘Hey Mike!’ and I gave him a hug. That’s just how we are — we joke around. Everything seemed fine, everything was just going as our daily lives go,” he says.
“Jolly”? “Beyond description”?
Hmmmm…seems as if this is all way over the top to me. No person is vivacious all the time; if anything their days are marked by highs and lows, but not too low as to create concern. Was the impact he had on other young people more because he was himself, or because he was Marie Osmond’s son?
One would think that in a school like this, there would be something to live for, if young Michael Blosil was gay. There would be more of an opportunity here for a gay teen with interests in fashion design to find similar young people just like him. And Blosil, according to Radar.com, was said to be “an aspiring fashionista.”
Michael Blosil loved fashion and his mother Marie Osmond supported his passion. At the time of his suicide Friday, Michael was studying for a degree in apparel manufacturing with his mother dreaming they might one day work together.
“Marie was totally behind Michael,” a source close to the singer tells RadarOnline.com. “She was helping him any way she should with his fashion ambitions.”
Michael was a student at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. The premiere fashion school on the West Coast, it was the setting for Season 6 of Project Runway. The Los Angeles campus is not far from the apartment building from which Michael leapt to his death.
But before that tragic turn, Marie had thought Michael might one day work for one of her companies, the source adds. “She has her lines of jewelry, handbags and other accessories, all of which are successful. She never pushed Michael to work with her but if he’d wanted to get involved with the manufacturing side of fashion business, the door was open to him.”
Instead, if Michael Blosil was gay, he became more isolated–and perhaps more closeted–than ever at the fashion school. Maybe it was all too overwhelming, getting what he seemed to want. And Blosil was described as a quiet young man, not particularly boisterous or out front. TMZ.com, always on the case, says its sources are claiming that Michael had attempted suicide once before and had been recently struggling with himself, but that Michael was clean and sober.
Then again, the problem may not have been as much social as academic. A few students in the first year of college sadly commit suicide over not being able to hack it in college, fearing the repercussions at home and elsewhere if they flunked out, and the prospect of failure. I recall that UC Irvine, in the mid-to-late 1990s, had several Asian American students, away from home for the first time, fearful of letting their parents down, and unable to cope socially as well as academically, who did away with themselves. NYU was wracked in recent years over young people–and a couple of faculty– throwing themselves off campus buildings over academic expectations that had fallen short of the mark.
The autopsy results have been deferred pending the toxicology report, and a death investigation has been declared by the L.A.P.D. Whatever the result, it is very sad when the only way someone can relieve their pain is to kill themselves.