Mental health is not a joke, every day millions of people struggle with dark and heavy thoughts that mess up their lives in every way possible, sometimes leading them to do things they wouldn’t have done if they got the proper help.
Having an ally to talk about what is wrong is helpful, especially if they have gone through similar things, however, it is important that they help you to get out from those tough times and not drag you under.
Farhan and Tanvir Towhid were two brothers that lived in Texas who struggled with depression and anxiety for several years before they found a supporter in each other and bonded thanks to their issues and their love for the famous T.V show ‘The Office’. Though they had tried before to get a better life by attending mental health facilities, they still felt like there was nothing to live for.
Both brothers live together with their family until they decided in April of 2021 to kill themselves after they killed the rest of the household. With only 19 and 21 years old, Farhan and Tarvin, respectively, made a pact to take everybody’s lives, killing Farhan’s twin sister, Farbin, their parents, Iren and Towhidul Islam, and their grandmother Altafun Nessak, who was only visiting them from Bangladesh.
Their pact consisted of committing suicide if their lives didn’t get better in the course of a year, but then they realized that if they did that, their family would be devastated and they wouldn’t have anything left to live for. But then after a couple of months passed, they didn’t see any improvement in their house and decided that it was best to rush something it was inevitable.
This decision was taken on February 21st of 2021, almost two months before they committed the homicide-suicide. The local police found the dead bodies in the middle of the night after a friend of the family noticed their concern that the household might be in danger since they had read a worrying suicide letter that Farhan published on his Instagram profile.
There, he began his note with the phrase ‘Hey everyone, I killed myself and my family’ and then proceeded to explain with details all of his and his brother’s reasons as to why they did that. Of course, he talked about how he fought depression and anxiety for a couple of years and how his brother was the most intelligent person he knew but couldn’t use his full potential due to his mental issues.
He carefully described how he harmed himself by cutting his body since the 9th grade, doing it more and more frequently every time and how his life seemed like it wasn’t going anywhere, and no matter what he did everything stayed wrong. He tried to find a light with treatments and therapy but still felt miserable and he stated that ‘the only reason for existence is happiness’.
Also, he showed how easy it was for his brother to get firearms without any kind of control, other than asking him if he wasn’t mentally ill to which he answered with a simple no, despite being on strict treatment for depression. Once they got the guns, they decided that Farhan would kill his sister and their grandmother, while Tarvin would kill their parents and then each other.
There was another important remarkable point that Farhan described in his 11-page note as one of the reasons for the killing, and that is one of the main things that draw attention to this tragic case. Farhan and Tarvin only felt good when they watched their favorite show together. They enjoyed the jokes and the dynamic of the sitcom, especially the role of Michael Scott, who was played by Steve Carrell.
Farhan showed his and his brother’s extremely big discontent and disappointment with the finale of the show, which inspired the whole plan to finally end their suffering. He wanted to be heard and had many suggestions on how the show could have been better, like the fact that ‘The Office should have ended after Michael left’ as he told in his letter. That is why he wanted to show this in his letter and hoped that everyone understood why this was a breaking point in their lives.
The Bangladesh Association of North Texas was especially sad about the tragic event and they reunited afterward to pay their respect. A lot of people were dreadful about this, like their neighbor Ahmad Hossain, who knew them for 8 years since they had been living there, and Farhan’s long time friend Faiza Rahman, who struggled to accept why her friend did this, though she kind of understand that this was his way of showing how much he loved them and it doesn’t make any sense for most people.