Child genius commits "logical suicide"

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PR1Berske

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From http://www.independent.co.uk/news/brilliant-pupils-logical-suicide-1188778.html


A BRILLIANT schoolboy shot himself in the head after carefully calculating the benefits of life and deciding it was not worth living, an inquest was told yesterday.
Dario Iacoponi, 15, a pupil at the London Oratory in Fulham, west London, which is attended by Tony Blair's two sons, Euan, 14, and Nicky, 12, kept a diary of his philosophical thoughts on life in the two months leading up to his death. The Oratory is one of the top Roman Catholic schools in the country.

After weighing up the pros and cons, he decided to commit suicide and planned it meticulously. He taught himself to use his father's shotgun and worked out how to fire it with a wooden spoon. He then waited until neither of his parents was at home before carrying out the plan last month.

Dr John Burton, the West London Coroner, said it was clearly a considered process and Dario "came down on the side of suicide".

The inquest was told that the teenager was a brilliant pupil who had already passed six GCSEs at A* or A grades a year early. He played the violin and piano and was hoping to study law at Yale or Harvard.

But a darker side to his character emerged in diaries found by police. They spoke of his difficulties in coping with life, although there was little, or no mention, of any specific problem such as bullying.

Dario, an only child, was found by a 20-year-old lodger at the family's home in Ealing, west London. He had a shotgun by his side.

His father, Pietro, a translator, was in Switzerland on business, and his mother, Saleni, a teacher, was at an amateur dramatics class.

Inspector Colin Nursey, who found five diaries covering the last year of Dario's life, said there was a reference in them contemplating suicide. "He would not leave a note, he was very specific about that," he said.

Neither parent was in court, but Nadia Taylor, a family friend for the past 15 years, told the inquest that Dario was "always a very sociable and very friendly person". She added: "We are all very shocked. It all came as a surprise to us that he felt this way."

But Dr Burton said he could see no other conclusion than that Dario had taken his own life. "He has made it clear that he did so. That is the only verdict that I can return.

"He was quite stoical about it. He did not fear death. He decided on balance that life is not good and points out that the mathematics he has used are indisputable."

Dario's headmaster, John McIntosh, has said he was baffled and the school shocked. "He was an extremely able boy and he got on well with other pupils and his teachers and was extremely happy at school."
 
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NY Yankee

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There is more to life than academics. Maybe his parents pushed him too hard. Maybe he didn't have friends or a girlfriend. Child geniuses usually go crazy when they reach that age.
 

MidnightFlyer

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I've been fortunate enough to never feel that bad, but I think the phrase 'It's always darkest before the dawn' is very fitting - even if there looks no hope, carry on. It will get better.
 

Ivo

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1998 or not, it's still an alarming story.

Another thing I can think of that is alarming is that... I would probably agree with him. I am all-but certain that I would come to the same solution if I tried to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of living. But I would then stop short on knowing that I have a niece who thinks the world of me (and will have a new niece or nephew in a few months' time), and that I have a lot to offer the world.

I wouldn't have said that 15 months ago :lol:
 

valenta

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A strange and perhaps frightening story, wouldn't want to do those calculations myself. A very sad story though, he would've had a lot to offer.
 

4SRKT

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Life isn't worth living really, that's obvious enough. But we're here and some force drives us on and very few drop out in the ultimate way.
 

klambert

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If you think about it the majority of the worlds population, is doomed to live unimportant lives where the impact they'll have on the world is going to be minimal. Importance lies with a handful a few elites, in the long run it doesn't matter if I or the forum user reading this dies. It wont make a huge impact on humanity.

I mean were all going to have over bearing worries, chiefly money and how you interact with other humans, but I find its best not to concentrate on these issues.

To make every day feel less pointless, I try to give myself something to look foward to, like for example I'm looking forward to getting paid this week and the Great Central diesel gala coming up.

The child in this seemed to live a privileged life, he would have had more of a chance of joining the handful of elites and becoming more important than the average schmuck. So perhaps he's being over dramatic.
 

AlterEgo

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Some of you are really depressing! ;)

Clearly this kid forgot to carry a one. Either that, or he isn't nearly as clever as he thought. Life is great if you allow it to be, whatever your purpose in life.
 

Clip

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Some of you are really depressing! ;)

Clearly this kid forgot to carry a one. Either that, or he isn't nearly as clever as he thought. Life is great if you allow it to be, whatever your purpose in life.
Yes but if you have suffered from bouts of depression at any age then life cannot be as great as otheres think it is. I can imagine just being a 'Brilliant schoolboy' could put a weight on your shoulders that may be hard to adjust to and accept and that in itself may have led him to work out this thing about life worth living.

Very strange that he was so methodical about it. And very very sad too.
 

Ivo

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There is more to life than academics. Maybe his parents pushed him too hard. Maybe he didn't have friends or a girlfriend. Child geniuses usually go crazy when they reach that age.
I've just noticed this post, and... it has brought back a lot of difficult thoughts and memories. I was in this position aged ~15. My father was never around and my mother almost never had time for me courtesy of my sister, and when she did have time for me she subjected me to a lot of pressure. I felt like few people at school cared; everyone was changing around me [I don't mean in a physical way] whereas I was the same I had been when younger and became a distinct outcast. I had very little contact with girls due in part to going to a single-sex school. And at one point I even wanted to quit school for good (before my GCSEs).

I know the feeling NY Yankee is thinking of - and unlike the last time I mentioned it, I don't need to write a 3,000 word essay for you all. It isn't easy being in that position - and it's even harder when the people around you are supposedly of a similar ilk but in practice show no interest in you.
 

221129

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I've just noticed this post, and... it has brought back a lot of difficult thoughts and memories. I was in this position aged ~15. My father was never around and my mother almost never had time for me courtesy of my sister, and when she did have time for me she subjected me to a lot of pressure. I felt like few people at school cared; everyone was changing around me [I don't mean in a physical way] whereas I was the same I had been when younger and became a distinct outcast. I had very little contact with girls due in part to going to a single-sex school. And at one point I even wanted to quit school for good (before my GCSEs).

I know the feeling NY Yankee is thinking of - and unlike the last time I mentioned it, I don't need to write a 3,000 word essay for you all. It isn't easy being in that position - and it's even harder when the people around you are supposedly of a similar ilk but in practice show no interest in you.

+1 Ivo as that sums up basically my situation right now! :(
 

bb21

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Some of you are really depressing! ;)

Clearly this kid forgot to carry a one. Either that, or he isn't nearly as clever as he thought. Life is great if you allow it to be, whatever your purpose in life.
I know you meant this as a joke, however, the highlighted bits suggest that something is seriously wrong. Children don't naturally do that (calculating pros and cons of life, etc). His family and his school both have a lot of questions to answer.
 

YorkshireBear

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I've been fortunate enough to never feel that bad, but I think the phrase 'It's always darkest before the dawn' is very fitting - even if there looks no hope, carry on. It will get better.
My favourite quote to this day alongside another one that until recently appeared in my signature.

Very interesting story, shall be sure to pass it on to my various physcology friends (so for once they can stop telling me why im like i am..... stupid gits but thats another story).
I imagine there must of been some form of mental disorder for his brain to able to carry out such logic and at no point think, i dont want to die.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
His family and his school both have a lot of questions to answer.
I find it rather alarming too, what was he taught that made him feel like he had to think like thsi and make a decision, did he lack happiness, despite what his closest relatives/friends said.
 

Nym

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Some of you are really depressing! ;)

Clearly this kid forgot to carry a one. Either that, or he isn't nearly as clever as he thought. Life is great if you allow it to be, whatever your purpose in life.
Why not be depressing, there usually really isn't anything to live for.

My hit count of things to live for has recently gone up from one to two...

What actually keeps me alive are them two things... Otherwise, logically, there's no point in my existence either.

I know you meant this as a joke, however, the highlighted bits suggest that something is seriously wrong. Children don't naturally do that (calculating pros and cons of life, etc). His family and his school both have a lot of questions to answer.
They do indeed, they should have been balancing that equation.

Either way, he probably is as clever as he thought, I don't know how many people on here have been brought up in a land of idiots were you can learn everything the class does in 1/10th of the time, and then sit bored out of your head for the remainder and have your life made hell because of it.

But trust me, that is enough to drive one to actually working out if life is worth it.

Very interesting story, shall be sure to pass it on to my various physcology friends (so for once they can stop telling me why im like i am..... stupid gits but thats another story).
I imagine there must of been some form of mental disorder for his brain to able to carry out such logic and at no point think, i dont want to die.
We all become utter slaves to logic (I'm not that far on myself) but we/they do come across as utterly emotionless a lot of the time, and considerations are made on a pure logic level.

Also, even if you do suffer from emotion in this state, people usually end up suppressing them as there are very few positive emotions in their life, so all emotion is suppressed.
 
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sprinterguy

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Why not be depressing, there usually really isn't anything to live for.

My hit count of things to live for has recently gone up from one to two...

What actually keeps me alive are them two things... Otherwise, logically, there's no point in my existence either.
The only down side to life is its' transient and impermanent nature, which means that from an individuals' perspective, there is ultimately no significance in being alive in the first place. Everything other than that, that nice bit between birth and death, is flippin' brilliant :D

As I've been gifted with the pleasure of life, I'm going to have a damn good crack at making the most of it and enjoy it for as long as possible! Certainly, there is little logic that drives me to do many of the things that I enjoy doing, let alone a logic that explains my own existance as a whole, but fortunately I appreciate the world and life itself as more than just a mathematical function and more than just a sum of parts.
 

Ivo

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I don't know how many people on here have been brought up in a land of idiots were you can learn everything the class does in 1/10th of the time, and then sit bored out of your head for the remainder and have your life made hell because of it.
I know that feeling - in relation to primary school, college, University and sometimes even secondary school (a grammar school). Some teachers would refuse to believe me if I finished early; I remember one would constantly say "No, you haven't" when I said "I'm finished". On the flip side though, the spare time I ended up was a good experience in tutoring others, especially at college.
 
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