During the initial stages of the expenses scandal, Nadine Dorries warned that she thought it entirely conceivable that an MP might attempt suicide. A political hailstorm rained down on her, with bloggers and fellow politicians calling her remarks 'over the top' and far worse. Indeed, the party leadership briefed against her, describing her as 'whacky'.
Sadly, today it has been reported that her prediction apparently came true on Thursday, when Conservative MP David Ruffley allegedly threw himself in front of the Gatwick Express. Thankfully he survived with only minor injuries. Perhaps we will never know the whole reason which led him to do this - and depression usually relates to more than a single thing - but it has been an open secret among his colleagues that he was very badly affected by depression over the expenses saga and the Telegraph's accusations against him. The fact that he was cleared of doing anything wrong would not have changed the way he felt.
Depression is a terrible thing. Whatever you think of Alastair Campbell, you should read the part of the interview I did with him where he talks candidly about how it affected him. Those of us who have never suffered from it cannot begin to understand it. The temptation to tell someone to 'snap out of it' is always there. But snapping out of it is easier said than done.
David Ruffley, or Ruffers as he is known to his friends, has received a lot of support from colleagues and the party but in the end it's not possible from stopping someone from going down a particular path if that is what they are determined to do. Now he has reached the absolute nadir, everyone around him can provide the love and support he will need to recover from this awful episode.