"It was like a bad movie." Family of 5 Jumps Off From Their Apartment in Switzerland

Trigger warning: This article has mentions of death.

A French family of 5 jumped off from their 7th-floor apartment in Switzerland on Thursday, 24th of March 2022. Read more about this incident and learn about coping when the family is in distress here. 

In this article, you’ll read:

  • A family of 5 jumps off from their apartment
  • Few things you should know about family distress

A family of 5 jumps off from their apartment

One fatal tragedy happened in the western Swiss town of Montreux that shocked the internet world. The netizens found out about the French family of 5 who jumps off a 7th-floor balcony. The family mysteriously decided to jump off the building; leaving four of them dead and one seriously fighting for his life in the hospital.

The family was composed of a 40-year-old man, his 41-year-old wife, and her twin sister, along with their 8-year-old daughter, and 15-year-old son. 

The reason behind the family’s decision of jumping off the building remained unclear. All of the family members except the teenager passed away as soon as they hit the ground. The authorities immediately took the 15-year-old boy into the hospital.

Jean Christophe Sauterel, the spokesman for the Vaud cantonal police, said, 

“The officers were unable to enter the apartment, and it appears that at that moment, the decision was made by this family to throw themselves off the balcony.”

The police officers went to the apartment to execute a warrant for the father. The police said that the warrant is in connection with the home-schooling of the son. 

“It was like a bad movie”

After the police knocked on the door, they heard a voice asking who they are. However, after the police responded, the apartment became quiet. 

After failing to make contact, the officers left, but “in the meantime, a witness called the police to say that people had fallen from an apartment balcony,” the statement said.

At around 7 o’clock in the morning, they found the bodies at the foot of the building.

“It was difficult to understand what I was seeing. It was like a bad movie,” said one of the witnesses.

According to the police, people connected who had a connection to the family as well as those who witnessed the incident have to undergo counselling. The authorities offered counselling to the people involved, including the first responders. 

The family of 5 are all French citizens. They have been living in Switzerland for “several years” and have their resident status. 

“We know that this was a rather reserved family, with little contact with the outside,” Sauterel told AFP. He also added that they had no run-ins with the law aside from the issue around the son’s schooling. 

Jean Christophe Sauterel explained that the family failed to respond to the requests for information from school authorities. It is a routine they need to undergo when a child is home-schooled. 

“Police were asked to pick up the father so he could explain the schooling situation of his child,” he explained.

According to the Tribune de Geneve, the neighbours said the father was working from home. On the other hand, the mother was a dentist in Paris, while her twin was an ophthalmologist. 

Few strategies to cope with family stress

family in distress

Image source: Shutterstock

Family in distress

As parents, we want to shield our children from all the stress and difficulties we are experiencing. But sometimes, the burden becomes too much that it spills over and the kids feel it as well.

Family distress refers to stress wherein emotional factors predominate in a social group consisting of parents or parent substitutes and children. It could also be an imbalance between demands facing a family and their ability to handle the demands. 

Stress is a normal part of life. Every individual encounter a variety of different situation in their everyday life. However, keep in mind that the most important thing to do is to recognize, accept, and manage your stress. 

Strategies to cope with family stress

These coping strategies could help and guide your family when it comes to dealing with stress and crises daily. There is no perfect way to manage but here are some tips that may work for you and your family. 

  • Know your stress cues Try to observe each of your family member’s signs of stress. On the other hand, ask them to do the same for you. Sometimes other people notice our stress cues before we do.
  • Take time to do something meaningful, relaxing, and fun for you and your family
  • Practice deep breathing or mindfulness.
  • Get enough sleep According to health experts, individuals who get at least 8 hours of sleep are less stressed
  • Accept your emotions and feelings. Keep in mind it is okay to feel sad, anxious, angry, or stressed.
  • Consider the emotional needs of your family members
  • Develop or use your support system
  • Laughter is the best medicine
  • Focus on your health and the health of others in your family
  • Get professional help

If you or a family member is under a severe amount of stress, don’t hesitate to reach out to your friend or the authorities and ask for help.


COVID-19: How To Make Home A Stress-free Place For Your Family When “Circuit Breakers” Kick In

Terminally Ill Cancer Patient In Singapore Prepares Own Funeral To Reduce Family Stress

5 Ways That Singapore Is Making Life Better for Families

Got a parenting concern? Read articles or ask away and get instant answers on our app. Download theAsianparent Community on iOS or Android now!