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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

To my Mother and Aunt. The pain of lost due to suicide!

When a loved one dies, your grief may be heart-wrenching. When a loved one commits suicide, your reaction may be more complicated. Overwhelming emotions may leave you reeling — and you may be consumed by guilt, wondering if you could have done something to prevent your loved one's death. As you face life after a loved one's suicide, remember that you don't have to go through it alone.

Disbelief and emotional numbness may set in. You may think that your loved one's suicide couldn't possibly be real.

You may be angry with your loved one for abandoning you or leaving you with a legacy of grief — or angry with yourself or others for missing clues about suicidal intentions

You may replay "what if" and "if only" scenarios in your mind, blaming yourself for your loved one's death.

You may be gripped by sadness, depression and a sense of defeat or hopelessness. You may have a physical collapse or even consider suicide yourself. 

You may continue to experience intense reactions during the weeks, months and even years after your loved one's suicide —There are triggers such as anniversaries, holidays and other special occasions can be painful reminders of your loved one's suicide. Don't chide yourself for being sad or mournful. Instead, consider changing or suspending family traditions that are too painful to continue. In the aftermath of a loved one's suicide, you may feel you can't go on or that you'll never enjoy life again. In truth, you may always wonder why it happened.  Eventually, however, the raw intensity of your grief will fade.

Adopt healthy coping strategies

The aftermath of a loved one's suicide can be physically and emotionally exhausting. As you work through your grief, be careful to protect your own well-being.
  • Keep in touch. Reach out to family, friends and spiritual leaders for comfort, understanding and healing. Surround yourself with people who are willing to listen when you need to talk, as well as those who will simply offer a shoulder to lean on when you'd rather be silent.
  • Grieve in your own way. Do what's right for you, not necessarily someone else. If you find it too painful to visit your loved one's grave-site or share the details of your loved one's death, wait until you're ready.
  • Expect setbacks. Some days will be better than others, even years after the suicide — and that's OK. Healing doesn't often happen in a straight line.   
I felt a double loss. When my Mom and Aunt committed suicide. It was a tremendous blow that I didn't feel I could get over. You see, they were identical twins who just never seemed able to live without each other. Where one went the other followed. I always had two Moms, lost them both that day. Sometimes it was a blessing and others times a curse because both of them had to agree on everything. My Mom was the hardest to deal with, on the other hand my Aunt and I had a special connection. We always used to laugh because, I once told them that they switched me at birth and that I really belonged to my Aunt. They were so different in many ways. My mom was the thinker, did well in school. My Aunt was the artist, didn't like school. I was so much more like my Aunt, hated school and loved art. There are so many time my Aunt and I be off together laughing with my mom wondering where we were and what we were laughing about. My Aunt understood me, my Mom did not.

Dear Mom and Aunt Kit,

Seven years since your story ended and I cried all those tears.
Shattered worlds, words unsaid, temporary insanity, something snapped inside of your head.
Still I have to ask myself, why, what if, and if only.


  1. So sorry for your loss!! The loss of a Mother and Aunt to suicide must be so difficult to deal with but it sounds that you're incredibly strong and coping as well as anyone could. Thanks for sharing your personal story!! Blessings :)

  2. So sorry to hear of your loss. What tremendous grief you must continue to feel. I am speechless. <3

  3. My heart goes out to you, Deborah. You so ably described the grieving process and were poignantly, painfully honest about your feelings in your poem. Your loss is unfathomable, but I see your resilience and your courage as you have faced this tragedy in your writing.

    May God continue to heal your strong and caring heart, my dear!


  4. I don't even know what to say...sometimes there are no words..just know this post hit home...As always...XOXOXO