13-page suicide note left by mom who jumped from 8th floor with infant

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The 44-year-old mother who died Wednesday after jumping out of an 8th floor apartment window with her infant strapped to her chest, left a 13-page handwritten suicide note, according to reports.

Cynthia Wachenheim, who works as an attorney with the Manhattan Supreme Court, was on maternity leave to care for her 10-month-old son Keston Bacharach when she wrote the disturbing note.  According to a NY Times source, Wachenheim was convinced that “two shameful incidents” — in which Keston had fallen off a bed and off a play set — had damaged him for life, and she blamed herself for both.

Cynthia Wachenheim

Cynthia Wachenheim and her husband Hal Bacharach (photo/Facebook).

She wrote that the two falls had caused Keston to suffer seizures and concussions, and that his behavior had been altered — even though her pediatrician, friends and family members didn’t see a change.  She claimed he was crying more than she was used to, and that he slept more.

Wachenheim wrote that the guilt of her son suffering because she had failed to protect him was what led her to the “evil” act she would commit.

On Wednesday, she strapped young Keston to her chest in a baby carrier, and dove out of the apartment she shared with husband Hal Bacharach.  Some witnesses would later report hearing a gunshot after mistaking the awful sound of her body hitting the ground.  Miraculously, Keston survived the fall — suffering only bruises.

harlem baby

A neighbors who lives two doors down from the couple’s apartment told Pix11 he heard them arguing about three hours before she jumped.

Christian Johnson told Pix11, “When I came home, they were arguing. And I actually stopped to listen, and I heard screaming, and the baby was crying. He just kept saying why wouldn’t you pick up the phone, why would you put that stress on me? Why wouldn’t you pick up the phone, why, why? He was screaming, why, why?”

Harlem bullding fall

Neighbor Regan Connolly said, “I’ve lived in New York city for 30-years and I’ve seen all sorts of tragic accidents, killings.” Connolly says this is one death she just won’t be able to forget.

146 comments

  • Tomi

    That poor infant! He had no control over the situation. God bless him and his mother. I am so relieved that they survived! But now the mother has to live with the fact that she almost killed herself and her son.

    • Genny

      Where in the world do you get the impression that she lived? Did you not read the article? There was only 1 survivor, the baby!!!

    • kitty

      are you retarded? do you just read headlines and jump to the articles to give your two cents and feel important?

  • David

    "Wachenheim was convinced that “two shameful incidents” — in which Keston had fallen off a bed and off a play set — had damaged him for life, and she blamed herself for both."

    So throwing yourself and the child out of an eight story window was the cure all for that.
    She dosen't appear too 'tightly wrapped' in the photo with her husband.

  • Ansley

    That is just such a sad story poor woman but thank goodness that baby was okay but now that child will not have a mother

    • Megan

      It said that she and he husband were arguing 3 hours before she committed suicide. It also said that the baby was heard crying.

      • Joe

        Thanks bookwriter for spelling that out for us…. you have a gift for redundancy. Do you really write books? I mean, books that anyone actually reads?

      • bookwriter_274

        I hope you don't shy away from the Bible. You would not actually "read" this one. I plan on publishing a concurance for the Holy Bible. Haven't thought of a name yet. But when I do, would you be interested in placing an order?

  • DOREEN

    ONLY GOD KNOWS WHAT DEPRESSION CAN DO….. LIVING WITH DEPRESSION FOR 20 YRS… THERE ARE TIMES…. WHEN YOUR MEDS AREN'T "RIGHT"….. SOMETIMES YOU JUST WANT TO "END THE TORMENT" THIS IS ONE CHRONIC ILLNESS THAT IS VERY MIS-UNDERSTOOD…WAKE UP PEOPLE…..

  • victoria

    Maybe the husband was arguing and upset because she failed to answer her phone…and he worried for her safety. Maybe she tried to commit suicide before and he was worried that she had tried it again…We will never know for certain.

  • Dr RGP

    My first thought as my eyes glanced the article's caption was: Did the baby survive? Thank God he did. What will it be like–some years hence–when the son first learns the details of his mother's death and his own survival? That information will take some "getting used to."

  • Emily

    I suffered with major depression after my first child was born. I literally envisioned myself throwing her against a wall while she was crying. I envisioned standing with her and I in the middle of a dark road, in front of a tractor trailer.

    I had a supportive husband and family and thankfully said these things out loud, and got help. This poor, poor mom. She could have come out of that darkness. My daughter is now 6 years old.

  • Diane

    Truly ironic that she was worried about consequences of two short falls, so she added a long fall into the mix.

  • Peggie

    KAT what is wrong with you there was nothing hilarious about the situation where a Mother took her own life and tried to take her sons life as well. May she RIP, and hopefully this doesn't have to ruin anymore lives.

  • Rosario

    Maybe her husband was emotionally abusive and controlling. Maybe he was screaming at her because he had the problems not her. Maybe she was pushed to the edge and didn't want to live with him anymore and there wasn't a way out she could see. So she felt her only option was to end her life and take her son with her. Judging by the way the man discribed her husband it isn't the first time he went off on his wife.

  • Jeena

    Wow.. its so true what the Bible said…. before you were in the womb, I knew you….. and They meant it for evil, but I purposed it for good… Even though the loss of this mother/wife to her family is significant, that child certainly is meant to be here…. Beyond a shadow of a doubt.

  • Genny

    I know it must be exciting to see your name in a comment list, but please do everyone a favour and read the article before you make you stupid comments.

    A) The mother committed suicide
    B) The baby survived

  • SomeoneWithABrain

    There is too much pressure on parents these days. Kids fall off of things all the time. It can happen in a split second even in the most childproof, attentive home. Don't beat yourself up about it. It's not a parenting fail! You live you learn, and kids are almost always okay even after terrible falls. Keep an eye on them and don't be so paranoid!

  • Guest

    I work with Hal. He is a soft spoken classy gentleman and I cannot imagine him as a controlling abusive screamer as some have suggested. I'm sure he was scared and concerned when she did not answer the " wellness check" phone call, and left work to go home & check on things, in fear of the worst case scenario having already played out. Unfortunately he could not know that she was already over the edge in an acute mental crisis and not capable of rational thought. Many people on antidepressants have had really bad frightening reactions including suicidal thoughts. I would push for a look-see into the meds she was on. My heart goes out to Hal & family. What an awful awful thing to happen.

  • molly striker

    I believe , the mother first was deeply disturbed {totaly obvious} Bt i am certain , she was abusing keston, and she couldnt face everyone knowing it.That she couldn’tell and get help. hence , in he mind she woul be constantly abusing her son till she killed him. So in her mindshe was saving ..both herself and keston from a life of tortureing and misery. thank goodness she died and the baby will live on ..

  • PleasantSanctuary

    Unbelievably tragic and totally insane. She needed psychiatric help, this was such abnormal behavior that it comes across as crazy and stupid, I feel so sorry for the precious child and for her husband.

  • ettab

    Mental Health is more important than education, ego, enjoyment, anything. You have Mental Health and everything else falls into place with G-ds help. People need to go for mental health checkups just like they do for other checkups.

  • guest

    I'm sorry, but come on…is life really that bad. She was a good lookin woman with a decent build. She's not unattractive. She's married to what appears to be a decent man. She's a lawyer, I can't imagine they have financial trouble. I'm sorry…its just excuses. Come live at my house for a week, where we struggle to pay our $1400 month house payment and get by week to week. I feel sorry for her family, for her children and their friends, I don't feel much pity for her. I'm just happy to hear that the baby is okay. Hopefully Dad has enough sense to take care of him.

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