The Story of the Suicidal Goldfish

Updated on October 7, 2008

This is a true story. I really had a suicidal goldfish. This hub is for nothing but laughs, because this is a really messed up story, and every time I tell it, people crack up. I'm not advertising anything, and frankly, I don't care if you don't like this story, because it's my story and I'm stickin' to it. I will tell you that it's full of childish dreams and a huge disappointment, and if you're even remotely thinking to yourself, "How on earth does a goldfish commit suicide?" then you should read on and find out!

Almost every kid has had a goldfish.

It's one of those phases in life where we think, "Hey, a goldfish! I want one! I want to prove I'm responsible and I can take care of another life!" Goldfish are almost like a rite of passage. If you can keep the little orange fishy alive, congratulations, you are ready to become a teenager and prove your worth! If not, well, they're only like, a dollar at Wal-Mart. Just go get a new one.

When I was about 11 or 12, I wanted to get an aquarium. I really, really, REALLY BADLY wanted one. It was my dream. I'd have a bunch of pretty fishies, all different pretty colors, swimming about in a big tank that I would control and if I got lucky, they'd have baby fishies and I could sell them like my best friend and neighbor did with her little guppy fish things. Mostly, I just liked the pretty colors.

My parents told me that having an aquarium would take extreme responsibility on my part. In order to prove myself, I would have to buy a goldfish, a goldfish bowl, rocks, and some scenery for it all on my own. Then, I would have to keep him alive for a full year. If I could manage to keep Mr. Fishy alive, my parents would buy me an aquarium. To keep it fair, they told my younger brother Mik the same thing.

Well, I'd finally saved enough money to get my goldfish and everything I thought his fishy heart would desire in a home. I had a pretty decent sized bowl, big enough to fit the average adult's head in (if you could get your head through the lip, that is). I got colorful rocks, a little plastic seaweed thing, and a cute fishy sign that said, "Beware of JAWS!" I'd bought distilled water (that's what you're supposed to use for fish, according to my parents), a fish net thingy to take him out for bowl cleaning, and plenty of goldfish food. I was ready.

People will tell you that fish from Wal-Mart don't last. I'm not going to discredit that, but at the same time, if you know what you're doing and you're very smart about doing it, they'll last. So we piled everyone in my mom's SUV and drove the 6 miles to Wal-Mart to get our goldfish. My fish was small, and didn't like his little fishy bag. Mik's was a bit bigger, and just kind of sat there in the water like he couldn't care less where he was going. Mom and Dad told us not to shake our fishy bags, else the fish would go belly up. We were old enough to know what that meant, so we clung to our bags for dear life all the way home.

After about a month, I realized fish weren't as easy to take care of as people claimed. You had to feed your fishy a little pinch of food every day, you had to wash out his fishy bowl when it looked dingy, you had to check on him to make sure he was healthy, and you had to be careful of where you placed him with the fear that his bowl might fall off the side of the table or counter or dresser. My fish was on my dresser, and I'd leave my window shade up during the day so he had plenty of sunshine. I thought that sunshine would make him a happy goldfish. He liked to swim around his seaweed and his sign, and sometimes I would talk to him to cheer him up if he looked sad. Keep in mind, I was only about 11 at the time, and thought fish needed cheering up when they sat around in one area for too long.

The months dragged on. I kept feeding my goldfish, kept cleaning his tank, kept giving him sunshine, all in the belief that one day, I would have an aquarium full of pretty, colorful fish that were all mine to enjoy. Mr. Fishy seemed happy, and that made me happy. After about 6 months, I felt he needed a friend. I got a betta. It was purple and hot pink. The pet store manager told me I couldn't put Mr. Betta in with Mr. Fishy, because Mr. Betta would probably kill him, and since I needed to keep him alive for a year, that would be a serious problem. So I put Mr. Betta's little container next to Mr. Fishy's bowl, so they could see each other and become friends.

Another 6 months went by. It was now a full year since I first acquired Mr. Fishy. I approached my parents with this glorious news.

They refused to buy me an aquarium.

I was devastated! This was my dream! This was our agreement! How could they do this to me?! We'd made a deal! They promised! This was SO not fair!

"We're sorry, Monika, but we just don't have the space or the money to buy an aquarium right now."


So I didn't get my aquarium. Honestly, I wasn't that surprised. My parents tend to pull these kinds of stunts when they promise me something if I do another something for them to prove myself. I lived. And so did Mr. Fishy.

It's a well known fact that goldfish don't live very long, which is probably why my parents had agreed to the deal in the first place. For a goldfish to live to be a year old is pretty uncommon. For one to live past that is even more unlikely. Yet Mr. Fishy just kept swimmin'.

It had been about 14 months since Mr. Fishy entered my bedroom in his shiny goldfish bowl. My family decided we needed to go on a summer vacation. I don't remember where we went, but I had instructed my neighbor (the one with the aquarium) to check on Mr. Fishy every day and give him food. His bowl would be alright for a week, so she didn't need to clean it. I told her that he liked being talked to, and he liked having sunshine. She promised she'd take good care of Mr. Fishy.

Upon returning from our trip, I discovered a strange little white bump on Mr. Fishy's head.

"LaCinda, what's this white bump?" I asked.

"I don't entirely know, Mon. It just kind of appeared about two days ago."

Oh well, he looked okay, so it couldn't be a bad thing, right? ... Right?

Mr. Fishy kept up his usual routine of swimming around the bowl and peeking out at me when I talked to him. His little white bump slowly grew, but I still couldn't figure out what it was. I chalked it up to it being a fishy thing, and thought nothing of it.

One night, I was laying in my bed, reading, when I heard this strange little tink, tink, tink sound coming from my dresser. Confused and slightly worried about Mr. Fishy, I put my book down, crawled out from under my covers, and went to investigate. The minute I put my feet on the floor, the tinking stopped. I watched Mr. Fishy for a good 5 minutes before returning to bed and swiftly falling asleep.

This strange occurrence happened several times again, for about a week. Finally, I thought I'd sneak up on Mr. Fishy and discover just what it was he was doing in there. I hid behind my bedroom door one afternoon, and waited for the tink, tink, tinking to begin. As soon as it did, I ever-so slowly opened the door.

Mr. Fishy was banging his head against the glass! And with quite the fervor!

I was in shock; was he really that depressed? Was he sick? Was he just getting old? Why would Mr. Fishy be doing that? What the heck is up with my dang goldfish?! I ran to tell my parents what I'd witnessed, but they didn't believe a goldfish would try to off itself. I persisted until they finally got up and followed me to my room, only to discover that Mr. Fishy wasn't banging his head anymore. Darn him, he covered it well! He was swimming along like it was a normal day and nothing had happened at all.

The tinking bang of his head meeting the glass went on for another week until that little white bump grew so big, it literally exploded like a super-fat icky-nast pimple. His little fishy blood spewed into the distilled water, followed shortly by little fishy brains. Mr. Fishy had, indeed, offed himself.

Oh, how I cried as we flushed Mr. Fishy down the toilet. I was one distraught preteen, I'll tell you what. I even wore black that day.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, was the story of the suicidal goldfish.

Nothing can beat the thrill of owning your very first goldfish. Yet, nothing can beat the dismay experienced when he dies.

Oh, and if you're wondering what happened to Mr. Betta... Honestly, I have no idea. I don't remember. ^_^

Mik ended up killing 12 fish before my parents told him he wasn't allowed to have any more. Then he got a three-toed box turtle, which he gave to me after about three months, and then accidentally killed when he put the tank, with the turtle, outside in the sun to dry after he'd washed said tank. Her head looked like it'd exploded. I have no idea what happened to her.

This has been another HubMob presentation, brought to you by Kika Rose. Enjoy the rest of your day, and love thy fishy with all thy heart, for he just might pull this stunt!


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    • profile image

      NINA 4 years ago

      not at all funny cruel, goldfish can live for 15 years or more if looked after properly, what's the joke in ill treating a fish,?

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      Ashley 6 years ago

      My gold fish jumped out of hi tank 5 times. :-( do you think he suicidal??????? o_O

    • profile image

      niki 6 years ago

      I doubt anyone will read tis, but tis is CRUTIAL INFO IF U ARE BUYING A GOLDFISH!!!. wen i ws 5, i got to goldfish. one lasted 8 years, and the other lasted 7. People tend to over look these few key factors when they get a goldfish. frist, you need to check the ph level in the tank or bowl on a weekly or two week basis. golfish are known to be one of the more "dirty fish" second, they are with loads of other fish in the pet store, so YES they are obviously going to be depressed if you isolate them in a tank. its always best to get 2 fish instead of 1. third, if your goldfish is in a tank, u must have a good filter, and not one of thoes cheap ass ones. i have had the same filter for 10 years now and it still works as well as the day i baught it. it came with a "2 year guarentee" and 10 years later, im still using it for my current goldfish who is now 2 years old. i HIGHLY recommend this brand "AQUACLEAR MINI aquarium filter." mine is good for up to a 20 gallon u.s tank. they do make larger models, and newer models.


    • profile image

      FishyFish 6 years ago

      I got 2 goldfish a few years ago, and one died. The other one is around 8-years old and swimming in a bowl that is quite obviously too small for him. We kept it(them) in a cool dry room that is rarely used, but my dad feeds and cleans him. One day, a few years ago, it had jumped out of its bowl. Onto the metal drying thing beside the sink. After getting scorched and placed back in water, he continues normally. But, when we got it, it had silver bits all over it. The one that died had black bits all over it. An now the living fish is worrying me because it's side is a silvery white colour, but it appears to be its actual skin, and not on the skin. It's fins look too fancy to be a goldfish(long and flow-y) and it only has a small amount of orange on it. I'm a bit worried about the silver and the fins.

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      Fishlover 6 years ago

      Goldfish could actually live for 10 years or more in good conditions. Stuffing a goldfish in a bowl is cruel.

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      CRAZY CAT LADY! 6 years ago

      Wow. That was a great story! I once had a goldfish by the name of Snack. After 2 years of living with my other goldfish, he climbed out of his tank. He walked about 10 yards outside of the tank, and sat on top of a running heater. Smart. Really smart.

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      Wow 6 years ago

      Goldfish will live for 10 to 20 yeas if treated right(the world record is 43 yeas old) if it was a common goldfish it could grow over a foot. The size tank it would need to grow that big is a 55-75 gal tank. If you don't believe me look it up, 1 yea is nothing.

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      Wow 6 years ago

      Goldfish will live for 10 to 20 yeas if treated right(the world record is 43 yeas old) if it was a common goldfish it could grow over a foot. The size tank it would need to grow that big is a 55-75 gal tank. If you don't believe me look it up, 1 yea is nothing.

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      Victoria 6 years ago

      My fish has been doing the same thing. I've had my goldfish for 5 years. He is Romeo and he is a large goldfish. Juliet, his mate, died 4 months ago. I bought him another friend, but the fish was too scared and too small so I brought the fish back to the store. Romeo has never been the same after his tank mates disappeared. Romeo is a large goldfish so he needs the space and he was acting completely bizarre when I put another fish with him. Instead of being happy he was crazed. After I took the fish back to the store, he was frantically swimming around the 30 gallon tank. Every time I'd come in the room, he freaked out. Then he started hitting his head on the top of the aquarium many times every day. I checked the water, the PH was a little off, so I changed the water, gave him aquarium salts etc. He has hit his head so many times, I just don't know if he's hurt his brain or what. There are no bumps or marks, but he doesn't do much any more. He floats, stays stationary, eats okay, but doesn't seem like a happy goldfish. I've been wanting to find him a new home in an indoor pond with other friends, but I haven't been able to locate one. Fish have feelings too - and I know that he misses his Juliet. They grew up together. I do think he has either been trying to commit suicide or just trying to get out of the tank for whatever reason. The water is fine. I hope that I will find him a pond soon so he can swim, eat, hang out with his kind.

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      ara liwanag 6 years ago

      why did you put the gold fish to the toilet and flush it.. ??

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      neon!  7 years ago

      I had a goldfish that lasted about 3 years and then died mysteriously. >.<

      Right now I have 2 new goldfishies & one of them has a weird red spot on the forehead and the other doing well.

      I liked your story, but I almost cried for what happened to your poor fishy. :(

    • profile image

      hi there 7 years ago


      my fish is banging its head on the side of its bowl too!

      now it has a bloodly spot on its forehead, but its not bleeding into the water. At the moment its still alive, but I fear it might die soon :(

    • profile image

      Ash 7 years ago

      i'm not even joking my friends grandma, has had a goldfish for 9 years, it's huge.

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      pietar5 7 years ago

      You're wrong about a lot of things goldfish can live to be 10 years old and a foot long if properly cared for you should never put goldfish in a bowl their ammonia will kill themselves and they're bodies dont grow but their organs do each goldfish needs at least ten gallon a piece you basically caused too much stress for him

    • profile image

      empathy 7 years ago

      You're an idiot. You are not special, ecletic, eccentric or even funny, just an idiot.

    • profile image

      nae nae 8 years ago

      lol that's a cool story... maby mr fishy had stress and when he didn't see you anymore he thought you abanded him so he just killed himself...R.I.P Mr Fishey.

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      Laura 8 years ago

      I google suicidal goldfish and found this. My goldfish killed himself the same way! We won him at the fair like 4 years ago, and somehow he kept living, and then like a year ago, my grandma got very ill and he started like trying to jump out of the water, and everyone joked that he was suicidal, but then it stopped. And then like a couple months ago, he started banging his head on the side of the tank and had a huge bloody red spot, then he died :( wtf

    • Kika Rose profile image

      Kika Rose 8 years ago from Minnesota

      Goldfish, I can guarantee you this story is as true as it gets. Ask my dad. :P

      I always figured the white bump was like, a malignant tumor or something that intoxicated the brain to the point of insanity. And it really did look like the thing exploded. One day it was a white bump, the next day little red fishy brains were spewing out where the bump had been.

      As a kid with only a small allowance, I wasn't able to afford a big bowl and filtration and real plants. I didn't know goldfish were social creatures, either. Though I suppose I shouldn't be surprised, fish tend to run in schools, and they must be pretty social if they call groups of fish schools. ;P

      Thank you all for the wonderful comments! ^_^

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      Goldfish 8 years ago

      "It's a well known fact that goldfish don't live very long"

      Actually a goldfish lives way longer than a dog or cat (more than two decades) - a goldfish which is taken care of properly, that's it, that is a fish which is provided with a tank big enough (at least a gallon), filtration, plants (to provide him with enough oxygen) and possibly companionship (other fish of the same breed, because the goldfish is a social animal).

      But yes, it's extraordinary for it to have survived so many months in a fish bowl - provided this story is true... because there are just so many elements in it that just sound laughable, including the description of his death. The white bump was likely a fungus infection a common problem with goldfish that live in inadequate water conditions - it was certainly not a pimp, and it cannot have exploded as if it were one!

    • profile image

      hiRou12345 8 years ago

      hi there kika i read your suicide gold fish i got sad,i remembered the 4 goldfish i had before anyway i also got a gold fish before when i was seven my dad brought me a 5 gall. tank for my 7 gold fish....actually 4 died after three weeks because of the small tank but 3 survived...and after 6 months the two died because of a power shortage,and i decided to transfer it to one of my sanctuary of tropical fresh water fishes such as guppies,and sail fin mollies my concrete tank outside our house,,it grew big and more healthy because its much larger than the actual size of my aquarium inside,,,hihihi..i actually had kissed lips to lips my gold fish when he was about to die because of a brown out in our house..because if i see him swimming good outside i transfer him back to the tank inside..that's why,,.(^-^)now im into fresh water community tank with ,sailfin mollies,platy,silver dollar and angel fish, and khuli loaches ......thanks

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      Valerie Lynn 8 years ago

      I've always said, acne is a bummer. For a goldfish, it must be really distressing, perhaps the constant reflection of a zit drove him as crazy as it does adolescents, or he was an adolescent goldfish. Anyway, I do feel sorry for him because he must have been very sensitive about something, and maybe no one ever told him getting rid of the offending bump might drive him out of his mind, or his mind out of him. Anyway, I looked up goldfish whispering and, nada. Rest in peace little fishy, and may the legend of your life be handed down through the ages.

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      hmmm 9 years ago

      Goldfish that are properly cared for can live 15 years or more. The only reason people think that they don't live long is because they keep them in a bowl with no filtration...essentially swimming in their own waste. You would probably smash your brains out too.

    • WHoArtNow profile image

      WHoArtNow 9 years ago from Leicester, UK

      Quality story, poor mr fishy! I have to admit, I thought gold fish only had 3 second attention spans (unless that's an urban myth) so the idea of one offing itself was a little strange!

    • sixtyorso profile image

      Clive Fagan 9 years ago from South Africa

      Funny sweet innocent hub

    • Just_Rodney profile image

      Rodney Fagan 9 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      No wont burst your bubble, you enjoy all the ovations you get, they are deserved, so far that is.

      Same as in my cooking and or creation and compilation of recipes. You are only as good as your last one!

    • Kika Rose profile image

      Kika Rose 9 years ago from Minnesota

      Christoph: Gooooooood morning! ^_^ I told my coworkers at Domino's a bit of this story today, and they all agreed with me that Mr. Fishy must've been really sick or something to have done that to himself. Fish don't usually do that. o_O

      Also; CORNIEST JOKE EVER. :-P Still made me giggle.

      And what's this about avatars? Do you mean my pic? ... You do know this pic's like, 5 months old, right? I have glasses and red hair now. I need to update... So bad... ... Wait, hey, I can do that now! I have time to kill! :D Yay!

      Rodney: Oh, trust me when I say I write the best personal short stories you will probably ever read. I've gotten numerous standing ovations for them, and am considering getting a bunch of them published. I should type up the story I wrote for Creative Writing my 11th grade year. Even I was amazed at how good it turned out. *beams* Now for someone to tell me I need to deflate my ego...

    • Just_Rodney profile image

      Rodney Fagan 9 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City

      Great hub, a laugh and a tear. I really enjoyed that.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 9 years ago from St. Louis

      Kika: A great story and told with fish bowls full of charm. I felt sorry for poor Mr. Fishy. Maybe he influenced you. He was a &quot;headbanger&quot; and you became a &quot;punk rocker&quot;! Great job!

      P.S. I've used your avatar in my new hub about avatars, so there!

    • Kika Rose profile image

      Kika Rose 9 years ago from Minnesota

      Jim: I know, right? It was pretty crazy. I personally believe he died of fishy-dementia. I mean, seriously, what kind of fish really does that to itself? Depending on where you got your goldfish, they can last for a long while. Though I can't say why Mr. Fishy lived to be over a year while my brother's fish never lasted more than a month. o_O

      KT: That reminds me of this show called Recess on the Disney channel, where the 3rd graders had a hamster named Speedy, and they all thought he was like, 40 years old. Turned out the teachers replaced him every year because the hamster would die.

      I dunno. Mr. Fishy never jumped out of his bowl. I've heard about fish doing that, too, but that's why you buy screens to go on top of your bowl/aquarium. :-P

    • KT pdx profile image

      KT pdx 9 years ago from Vancouver, WA, USA

      Awwwwwww! Poor Mr. Fishy! My fish lasted over a year too, and my grandma had one that lasted over 3 years. We kept on joking with her that she was replacing it, but she wasn't.

      I've also heard a true story about a fish who never wanted to stay in his bowl and kept jumping out onto the floor. Maybe a cousin of yours?

    • jim10 profile image

      jim10 9 years ago from ma

      Wow! A gold fish lasted over 1 year. I really can't believe it. We got one for our son a few years back and it lasted a week. We did everything we were supposed to. My wife even had fish before. We just tried again with some much more tolerant fish. We got two Opaline Guorami's. The pet store guy said they could survive dirty water etc... It has been about a month so I am pretty hopeful. I'm sorry your parents didn't keep their word. That seems unfair after all of the effort you put in.

    • Kika Rose profile image

      Kika Rose 9 years ago from Minnesota

      Spryte! ^_^ *snuggle*

      I was a pretty eccentric 11-year-old... I did stuff like that a lot. You shoulda seen Mr. Fishy's face when I caught him, though. It was a mixture of "Oh snap!" and "Uh oh, I'm doing something I'm not supposed to!" :-P

      Okay, so it was more like:









      lol Yay for internet fishy faces!

    • spryte profile image

      spryte 9 years ago from Arizona, USA

      Oh Kika!! I absolutely loved this tale of your suicidal goldfish...especially the part where you hid behind the door trying to catch him doing the deed. Wonderful! :)

    • Kika Rose profile image

      Kika Rose 9 years ago from Minnesota

      I love telling it. The reaction on people's faces the minute I tell them the title is usually something along the lines of &quot;What the f*? Are you for real?&quot; I even have a full-length story on that turtle's exploded head. I'm sure this hub won't generate any income, but I didn't write it for that; I wrote it to share an intriguing childhood happening I'd experienced, and to post something new for the HubMob. It's sad this topic wasn't mentioned BEFORE I wrote my hubs on dogs, else I would've plopped them in. Oh well!

    • Ntathu profile image

      Ntathu 9 years ago from SE London

      Excellent Kiki, definitely have a way with words. A joy to read...

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      gwendymom 9 years ago from Oklahoma

      very funny. I loved this story.