Kate Spade’s suicide on Tuesday shocked the world. Famous for her upbeat prints and hugely successful fashion conglomerate, Spade was known by both the fashion industry and loved ones as being bright, loving, generous, and funny.
But her suicide showed a much darker picture of what her inner life was really like. Spade, 55, hung herself by a red scarf in her New York apartment. She was found by her housekeeper. Though people thought she and husband Andy Spade (actor and comedian David Spade's brother) had the "perfect marriage," the truth of their 10 month separation came out after her death.
Andy Spade made a long formal statement to the media detailing their recent separate lives and defending their marriage.
"Kate was the most beautiful woman in the world. She was the kindest person I've ever known and my best friend for 35 years. My daughter and I are devastated by her loss, and can't even begin to fathom life without her. We are deeply heartbroken and miss her already.
Kate suffered from depression and anxiety for many years. She was actively seeking help and working closely with her doctors to treat her disease, one that takes far too many lives. We were in touch with her the night before and she sounded happy. There was no indication and no warning that she would do this. It was a complete shock. And it clearly wasn't her. There were personal demons she was battling.
For the past 10 months we had been living separately, but within a few blocks of each other. Bea was living with both of us and we saw each other or spoke every day. We ate many meals together as a family and continued to vacation together as a family. Our daughter was our priority. We were not legally separated, and never even discussed divorce. We were best friends trying to work through our problems in the best way we knew how. We were together for 35 years. We loved each other very much and simply needed a break.
This is the truth. Anything else that is out there right now is false. She was actively seeking help for depression and anxiety over the last 5 years, seeing a doctor on a regular basis and taking medication for both depression and anxiety. There was no substance or alcohol abuse. There were no business problems. We loved creating our businesses together. We were co-parenting our beautiful daughter. I have yet to see any note left behind and am appalled that a private message to my daughter has been so heartlessly shared with the media.
My main concern is Bea and protecting her privacy as she deals with the unimaginable grief of losing her mother. Kate loved Bea so very much."
Franklin Graham points to the saddest part of her shocking suicide: the 13 year old daughter she has left behind. "Designer Kate Spade was an icon in the fashion industry," wrote Graham. "She seemed to have it all—money, success, beauty. This CNN article points out the truth that it 'seems to constantly surprise us that money and success do not solve all problems.'"
"They're so right," Graham continued. "Many people believe that more money or success will be the answer to all of life’s problems. That’s just not so. Far more important—and lasting—than any of these things is having a relationship with God, who created us and loves us. He wants to take the burdens that we face in life if we’ll just let Him. Let’s pray for Kate Spade’s family, especially her 13-year-old daughter, that God would comfort her heart now and in the coming days."
It is telling that Spade's note was reportedly just to her daughter and not to her husband. Friends and family are reeling in shock, offering various theories for the death that no one could have predicted. But Spade's brother, Earl Brosnahan, is very defensive of those offering malicious theories of financial ruin and impending divorce.
“We are grateful for the incredible outpouring of love and support the family has received over the last few days,” he said to People. “We should all remember the beauty and joy that Kate brought to this world.”
He continued: “But it is sad and very hurtful, given the pain the family is enduring, that people with no real knowledge of the situation are leaking false, speculative information that maligns Kate’s character and belittles the health issues she bravely fought. We once again ask that the family’s privacy be respected during this challenging time.”
Graham's post reminds us that what we see on the outside--of someone's personal success or acquisitions or what their relationships look like--is not always a just representation of what is really going on inside. We need to seek our own happiness in God and try to live as authentically as possible, especially in this "Instagram-worthy" world of fake projections.
Let's all pray for Spade's daughter as she faces the rest of her life without her mother. Thank you!