Marie Osmond’s 18-year-old son Michael committed suicide


Friday evening, Marie Osmond’s son Michael Blosil committed suicide in Los Angeles. There’s a lot of information coming out about this, and some of it is slightly contradictory, but the facts seem to be as these: 18-year-old Michael had a history of depression and had been in rehab once, when he was 16 years old; he was adopted, and one of Marie’s eight children with her ex-husband Brian Blosil; Michael left a suicide note; he threw himself off an eight-story building; he was a student at the Fashion Institute in Los Angeles. On Saturday, Michael’s uncle Donny Osmond confirmed Michael’s suicide and simply said: “Please pray for my sister and her family.” Marie Osmond released this statement Sunday: “My family and I are devastated and in deep shock by the tragic loss of our dear Michael and ask that everyone respect our privacy during this difficult time.” Here’s more from People Magazine:

Marie Osmond’s teenaged son, Michael Blosil, has killed himself by leaping to his death around 9 p.m. Friday in Los Angeles, reports Entertainment Tonight, which quotes Marie’s brother, Donny Osmond, as saying, “Please pray for my sister and her family.”

Through her rep, Marie Osmond released a statement Saturday. It says, “My family and I are devastated and in deep shock by the tragic loss of our dear Michael and ask that everyone respect our privacy during this difficult time.”

According to ET, Michael left a note explaining he intended to end his life after a lengthy battle with severe depression that left him, he said, feeling as if he had no friends and could never fit in.

In 2007, Michael, then 16, entered a rehab facility. His mother said at the time, “My son Michael is an amazing young man, shown through his courage in facing his issues. As his mother, I couldn’t be more proud of him.”

The reason for the visit to rehab was never disclosed. Michael is one of eight children Osmond has raised with ex-husband Brian Blosil.

By March 2009, Marie told PEOPLE that Michael seemed to be turning his life around. He was finishing up his last year of high school while living with his mom in Las Vegas, where she and Donny headline a show.

“I couldn’t be more proud of him,” Marie said at the time. “He’s got a 3.9 GPA in high school. He’s looking at scholarships to some wonderful colleges.”

A rep for Donny and Marie Osmond confirmed to PEOPLE that the show at the Flamingo Hotel was canceled Saturday night. It is being determined how long the hiatus will remain in effect.

Marie Osmond, one of nine Utah-bred Osmond siblings, began performing with her brothers at age 3. She has been outspoken about the trials of her own life in the spotlight.

In her 2001 memoir Behind the Smile, she detailed her battle with postpartum depression following the birth of her son Matthew. She also revealed that she had been sexually abused as a child.

She did not identify her abusers but said they were not family members.

In 2006, Marie’s rep denied that the singer had tried to commit suicide, attributing reports about Osmond to the postpartum she suffered.

[From People]

I can’t even imagine how difficult it is for Marie and for the whole Osmond-Blosil family, and obviously, my thoughts and prayers are with them. Marie seems like she’s a really great mom, and last year she even came out publicly in support of her gay daughter, and gay rights and gay marriage in general – which was a contradiction of the Mormon church’s teachings. So, basically, Marie is the kind of mom who puts her kids before any prejudice.

With that in mind, I do have one minor question about this situation, and it’s really only about my own curiosity, and not in any way to disrespect the Osmond family at all. If Michael had been severely depressed for so long – which I believe – the only minor question I have is about any potential prescription medication he may have been on? It seems strange to me that a kid who is so depressed wouldn’t have been on something to help ease his depression chemically. Now, it’s perfectly possible he was on something for his depression, and it simply didn’t work, or it made the depression worse, which happens in some patients. But still, don’t you wonder? Wasn’t this kid taking anything?


Marie Osmond in Las Vegas on December 12, 2009. Credit: WENN.

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41 Responses to “Marie Osmond’s 18-year-old son Michael committed suicide”

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  1. canadianchick says:

    Aww RIP, poor kid and my thoughts go out to his family. He shouldve been on meds, but depends if he was on the right dosage and type of med, depends on if he was taking as directed (lots of people hate the side effects), depends on if he was mixing them with alcohol or drugs, and meds alone doesn’t conquer depression, also he shouldve been in therapy too.Too many suicides lately!

  2. happymom says:

    This is so tragic. Brain chemistry is such a complicated thing-and he very well may have been on medication. Even with all the scientific advances in pharmacology-it can still be difficult to find the right ones, the right levels-unfortunately, it doesn’t always “fix” the issues.

  3. Beth says:

    Where does it say he wasn’t on medication or seeing a therapist or it this just people’s assumptions? Perhaps he was getting some treatment but it just wasn’t working or he stopped doing it. It seems too early to make assumptions when all of the information hasn’t come out.

  4. GatsbyGal says:

    Why did you dedicate an article to this and not to Andrew Koenig’s disappearance and suicide? I kept waiting for this site to have a story about the fact that he was missing, and then when his body was found I thought for sure you would write something about it, but nothing…and now this.

  5. The Damn Nation says:

    Happily I’ve come through a lengthy struggle with depression, but I know all too well that it’s very hard to medicate. I went through 5 different prescriptions before finally finding one that didn’t give me chronic insomnia, weight loss, make me feel suicidal (or make it impossible to orgasm!), and they often take 2 long miserable weeks to take effect. RIP Michael.

  6. vic says:

    Many antidepressants make people, especially young people, more depressed and suicidal. I hope the mental health community can figure out something else because this is beyond tragic. Suicide changes families and friends forever. My heart goes out to his family.

  7. FrenchToast says:

    The drugs you mentioned, don’t usually help much beyond the placebo effect. Check out the latest reports of the faked-for-profit effectiveness studies.

  8. Kaiser says:

    Gatsby – Personally, I didn’t cover the Koenig situation because I thought it was too sad, made even worse by the fact that too many bloggers were using the situation as a platform to make “Boner” jokes.

  9. SammyHammy says:

    This is such a shame. As a person who also suffers with depression and other issues, I understand how he could feel so hopeless. It’s extremely difficult to treat depression, as there is no one “perfect” pill that works for every person. It’s complicated and involved a lot of trial and error. It’s just so sad for him and his family. My heart goes out to them.

  10. SammyHammy says:

    French Toast, please don’t make ignorant statements like that. Having had my own issues for some time, I can assure you that it is not a “placebo effect.” Without my medications I would be (and was) in serious trouble.

    Perhaps if this young man, as well as Andrew Koenig, had the correct combination of drugs to help control their depression, they might still be alive today.

    Decades of research and proven efficacy are not negated by some headline-seeking quacks who are trying to get a little publicity.

  11. vic says:

    I believe the drugs have much more than a placebo effect for a lot of folks. I’ve personally tried several. They made me feel better in some ways but much lower in others. Can’t take them. Exercise helps a lot but it’s hard to get started when you are in pain and exhausted all the time.

  12. GatsbyGal says:

    Kaiser – I can understand that, it was amazingly sad. I never did watch Growing Pains, but I’m very familiar with his dad (Chekov from Star Trek) and the whole time my heart just broke for him and his wife. I guess I was hoping y’all would write something since you guys usually handle those kinds of stories with a lot of respect, and as you said, lots of blogs just weren’t being very kind.

  13. elaine benes says:

    I cannot imagine what the Osmonds are going through. My heart bleeds for them. To the topic of antidpressants, I know people who have taken the medication.After awhile, they feel so much better, they go off it thinking they are cured or that they have a grip on life & can deal with life whithout medicating. My prayers are with the Marie & her family..

  14. Jessica says:

    She really looks good in these pictures.

  15. Maritza says:

    May he RIP. The loss of a son is the worst pain there is. I hope Marie finds consolation with all her other kids.

  16. wif says:

    RIP, Michael. And RIP Andrew Koenig.

    Prayers to your families and friends.

  17. Popcorny says:

    I too am dismayed that Koening didn’t/is not getting coverage here.
    His father said some very important things in his grief.
    I like Marie, so don’t get me wrong, but I don’t think she was such a terrific mom -at least not as much as it’s implied. I kinda think she’s always placed more emphasis on career and her appearance (and appearances) than substance, even when it came to her kids.
    Popeater had a very interesting soundbite/quote from a recent interview where she spoke of her son -and said (although she knew his depression) she wasn’t going to approach him, that she was waiting for him to want to talk to her.
    So wrong, so soo wrong (and Kroening’s father emphasizes the need to reach out TO the depressed).
    But, you know, Marie (and her husband) had the boy put up in an LA apartment while they did their “important” things while waiting for this depressed, young, hurting and inexperienced boy to “come around” and “come to them”.
    And of course, Marie is immediately joined at the hip by Enteretainment Tonight.
    Just absolutely clueless.
    So, as cute and wholesome as Marie looks, she’s not too cute or so wholesome at all.

  18. Julia says:

    FrenchToast, antidepressant drugs (SSRI’s and SNRI’s) are not just effective because of a “placebo” effect. I can believe that in SOME cases, especially those where people misunderstand what exactly the drugs do, there is an element of “placebo” effect, but if they were not substantially more effective than placebo, they would not have gotten approval for sale as neurotransmitter modifiers.

    There are several issues I feel are worth noting:

    1) Medication is rarely enough alone. Even once the medicine reaches its full concentration in the system, it is much more effective when combined with therapy (cognitive-behavioral, especially). Even exercise increases effectiveness, as do b-vitamin supplements.

    2) Medications are not the quick fix people seem to think they are. They help, but it’s trial and error to find the right one, and then the right dose. It takes some weeks before the levels are balanced and at peak effectiveness, and they only modify chemistry–they do not completely remove any non-biochemical causes of depression.

    3) Depression is complicated. It cycles. Rapid cycling can mimic bipolar disorder, which calls for additional meds. Many different symptoms and levels of severity are referenced when the term “depression” comes up, from the milder disthymia to severe depressive states. Even if he was on medication, it is not so easy to say what exactly was ineffective without knowing more information that we ever will about this individual’s circumstances.

  19. Julia says:

    Also, SammyHamm, glad to find that you stuck with it to find the right treatments. Some people with situational depression find that when the grief/trigger abates they return to normalcy, but many of us have to learn to manage depression for the long-term, and it can take an incredibly long time and a lot of effort to truly feel “normal”. I’m happy for you. 🙂

  20. TaylorB says:

    I feel very sad for the Osmond family as well as the Koenig family. Such a tragedy that they will struggle with for a long time.

    I also feel terrible for anyone who saw the suicide fall/landing of Michael, what a terrible thing to witness.

  21. SammyHammy says:

    Thanks, Julia. I think if it weren’t for my excellent physician and my loving and supportive husband I might have been another tragedy, so it is a sensitive issue for me.

  22. Chana says:

    I feel very sorry the the Osmond family and I hope they can get through this difficult time.

    I agree with other posters that depression is a very difficult problem to treat; I know, I have dealt with it for years and years. I could never figure out what was wrong with me and then I went to see a therapist. Once I knew what it was, I couldn’t take meds because I was too young (about 13) so I went to psychologists a lot.

    Then I went to college and hit the bottom of a terrible bout of depression and finally got some medication. The first one had the opposite effect; making me zombie-like and tired all the time. The one I’m on now is wonderful. And I can guarantee there is no “placebo” effect. I’m a naturally skeptical person so if I don’t feel something, especially with depression medication, I make sure my psychiatrist knows.

    Treating someone so young is difficult. The medications for depression often make them worsen for young people. There is no way of knowing if he was taking anything or was talking to anyone about it.

    If anyone is depressed or feeling depressed, please see someone or talk to someone about it. It is a real issue. I am so very happy now that I see a psychologist regularly and take medications. I would be dead right now if I hadn’t.

    EDIT: I also have to say that I have a very loving and supportive family and friends. Having a network of supportive people around you is also essential.

  23. EMV says:

    This is very tragic. Even if medication helps and affects the brain chemistry, one still has to do some things to help themselves as far as counseling for example, affirmations. This is from personal experience,but I think everyone is so different it is hard to know what would help. Genetics can be very sad.

  24. Kim says:

    I Hate that the media like GMA refer to him as MO’s “adopted” son

  25. seriously? says:

    My father committed suicide after struggling with depression and he was on medication and seeing a counselor. What a lot of people don’t understand is that a lot of depressed people will committ suicide when it looks like they are getting better. They finally have the energy to do something about their situtation, and the idea of having to go through yet another round of depression is just too much to bear. My father was one of the most gentle, loving men that I have ever known and depression is a sickness. When people ask why he died, I always tell them that depression killed him. Not the suicide. That was just the end result of the illness.

    Even if you are medicated, or if somebody you know is suffering from depression and is taking the right medications, please keep a close and loving eye on them! My sister-in-law, who also suffers from depression, said that that the thought of ending the cycle seemed like the best thing she could have done for her family. Luckily she didn’t see it through and we still have her here with us. But we are so, so careful now to make sure she’s doing okay. Watch over those you love!

  26. Harper says:

    This is so difficult for me to hear, as my fifteen-year-old little sister committed suicide in 2008. I know all too well the shock, agony, and unbearable weight this family is carrying right now. My heart goes out to them, to seriously?, and to anyone else who has lost a loved one this way.

    Like others have said, anti-depressants and counseling don’t always help. My sister had both of these things, plus a family who loved her with all our hearts, and still ended her life. Sometimes, a person just can’t be reached.

  27. FrenchToast says:

    Thanks for the lectures everyone! But, I’ve already heard the sales pitches from the people selling them and the read the latest reports of how those decades of studies were FAKED. Maybe you’re the sheltered ones? And if you are experiencing the placebo effect, you wouldn’t know any better what was causing your mood change, would you?

    Why not try cocaine then? I’ve heard that “helps” energy and self confidence. DRUGS-street or not street-ARE NEVER THE ANSWER TO ANYTHING. It takes more effort to learn to love yourself and control your thoughts, but that is how you control your moods and attitude. That is also why drugs are STILL not working for that problem.

    Julia-Big Pharma is a money making business. They CONSTANTLY APPROVE drugs that they know hurt, kill and are ineffective. Wake up.

  28. jule says:

    placebo or not, whatever works for people and makes them feel better is a good thing!

  29. JohnnieR says:

    Sad and tragic. Horrible for the family.

    You know, there’s a lot to be said about a very healthy diet, exercise, and their co-relation to a healthy, happy mind. I’m being quite serious here. A friend of mine suffered from depression for years. His physician had him on anti-depressants, which, with some people, can make it worse, believe it or not.

    At the point of giving up, his sister talked him into a VERY healthy, organic diet, yoga, and other exercise – no alcohol, caffeine, sugar, white starch, or any drugs – nada.

    Today, 2 years later, he is a CHANGED person – very happy and has not suffered another serious depressive episode. He attributes his recovery to his diet and exercise. I am NOT saying it’s this cut and dry, that this is the solution for everyone who suffers from depression, but I have to say that this is the FOURTH person I know who’s suffered from depression – made radical changes to their diet and lifestyle – and who have come out at the other end of the tunnel.

  30. Chana says:

    I wasn’t fed any nonsense about medication. I refused medication for years thinking that it would be fine if I just went to see a psychologist. One finally suggested that I just try it and it worked for me.

    The brain is a very unique structure in all of us. What works for some, doesn’t work for others. All those who can do around a depressed person is be there for them and try to help.

    In the end, if a depressed person is determined to take their own life, they will. It’s a sad thing, but it’s true.

    I wasn’t one of those people, thank goodness. The medication, psychologist and my family are keeping me sane.

    Others, unfortunately, are not so lucky.

    But please don’t try to act like depression cannot be helped by the right medication.

    I don’t take cocaine because, quite frankly, it’s terrifying. The side effects are bizarre and unattractive and it’s insanely addictive. My depression medication is not addictive.

  31. April says:

    No one knows what was going on with him, whether he had medication or not – I had a friend who was severely depressed as well, and after years of trying different things, she had finally found the “right” combination of medication that made her feel good and gave her the energy to get through the day. After about a year, she felt so good that she thought she was good enough to quit taking it and that she had it under control… unfortunately her spiral afterwards left her two kids without a mom. This happens in MANY cases of severely depressed people, the world is happy again so everything is ok, and they don’t think they need the pills (or don’t want to spend the rest of their lives on pills) and the world drops out too fast for anyone to step in and help. My heart goes out to the Osmond family, and I will keep them in my prayers tonight.

  32. Kat says:

    My thoughts and prayers go out to the Koenig and Osmond families, I know what it is like to lose close family members but suicide must be a fresh and awful hell for those left behind. Walter Koenig’s statements before and after Andrew’s death were particularly wrenching I just pray God sends these sad families some peace and privacy.

  33. lin234 says:

    Thank you to those who shared. It’s a delicate situation and I hope all the best toward her family and her.

    To suggest someone start using hard drugs for depression is ludicrous. I hope you didn’t put that idea in anyone’s head. Especially when they are at their most vulnerable.

  34. Molly says:

    My prayers go out to Marie and her family.

  35. Anne says:

    “It takes more effort to love yourself and contorl your thoughts than to take drugs.” “Drugs are not the answer to anything.” How crazy!! So you would not take insulin if you had diabetes?
    Insane!! And you can control an illness by loving yourself and thinking the right kind of thoughts. How irrational!! Only those who have suffered under the horrors of depression can really appreciate the medicine thats improves the quality of a life. The depressed do not need to be judged for using medicine to help relieve the darkness and hopelessness that they feel because of a chemical imbalance in their brain.

  36. ghostbuster says:

    seriously? thanks for understanding. i didnt read all the other posts. its true when you are in the ‘black’ you cannot talk but you will make yourself seem better for society. and that is when it is really bad. im so so sorry you lost your daddy but im am so grateful that you understand the problem

  37. Julia says:

    FrenchToast, while I am sure that pharmaceutical companies are big money makers, they do not approve drugs on their own. The FDA conducts its own studies on medications, as well, and a drug can only be sold if it is proven to be safe (within what a short-term study can show), and effective. Selective serotonin/norepinephrine drugs have been around for a while now, and are merely improvements on older drugs that have been working for years. Perhaps if you understood what exactly they did you would be less willing to spout conspiracy theory nonsense. 🙂

    There are several books written about the “evils” of antidepressant medication, but I am sincerely hoping that their authors (and you) never have depression or a family member with it, because while you may not like the idea, I am betting you’d prefer the drug to waking up every day without the will to live.

    Oh, and a comparison to cocaine is not even worthy of rebuttal.

  38. Julia says:

    And anyone who says that people with depression should just “control their thoughts” has no idea what depression is. Depression isn’t being sad or having a bad day. Depression causes all-or-nothing, disordered thinking that can sometimes result in self-injury and/or suicide.

    You can’t “unthink” your way out of depression (without the aid of a cognitive-behavioral therapist) any more than you can tone your butt muscles with the power of your mind.

  39. Julia says:

    JohnnieR, I am glad that you know someone who has come out of the tunnel, but it is worth noting that yours is an anectodal example and cannot be interpreted widely as a large sample-size study can. Your friend sounds like he had a milder form of depression (which is still awful and can be crippling), as opposed to a more major depressive disorder.

    Exercise has been shown to be as effective as medications for milder depression, and the correct balance of vitamins increase effectiveness of certain SSRI drugs, BUT (and it’s a big “BUT”), often people need assistance (medical/therapeutic/both) to even begin such regimes. It isn’t just strength of will. It is hard enough for non-depressed people to begin an exercise/diet program (hence the country’s weight problems), so try it when you can’t even get out of bed or stop crying. 🙂

  40. jim bob says:

    Me and my 19 kids are sassy and happy.
    If I had Donny and Marie as relatives, I’d quit having kids and do the David Carridine.
    Thank god for TLC and my off-beat religion

  41. Al Zado says:

    Truly sorry to hear this devastating news. My heart felt sympathy goes out to the Osmond family. I had a close friend jump like this boy did for no apparent reason. I tried to incorporate my feelings in a fictional account entitled, Raison d’Etre. It helped but still hurt to think of the utter loss of a human soul. Who’s worth remained to be seen. Who felt at his wits’ end for reason enough to commit suicide. All we can do is say a prayer to share some comfort for this tragedy. And then maybe contemplation on why…. AZ