Suicide Loss Survivors

“Mightier than the Sword”: Healing from a Spiteful Suicide Note

“Mightier than the Sword”: Healing from a Spiteful Suicide Note

“Mum, I could write to you for days, but I know nothing would actually make a difference to you,” the note begins. “You are much too ignorant and self concerned to even attempt to listen or understand, everyone knows that.” More hateful words follow, culminating with, “You are a waste of space, ignorant, and a […]

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“If Only”: Self-Blame After a Loved One’s Suicide

“If Only”: Self-Blame After a Loved One’s Suicide

“I should have _________.” “If only I _____________.” “Why didn’t I ____________?” Different people may fill in the blanks with different words, but the sentiments are the same: I am to blame. I should have been able to stop my loved one from dying. Feelings of self-blame affect many people who have lost a loved […]

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Unwritten Goodbyes: When There is No Suicide Note

Unwritten Goodbyes: When There is No Suicide Note

Suicide causes so much devastation in the living – so many overwhelming feelings, so many should-have-done’s and could-have-been’s, so many questions. Amid such heartbreak, many survivors also agonize about why their loved one did not leave a suicide note. Melinda McDonald, a blogger who lost her husband to suicide, wrote about this agony in a […]

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“Shame Festers in Dark Places”: Keeping Suicide Secret

“Shame Festers in Dark Places”: Keeping Suicide Secret

A friend recently sent me an anguished email about a friend of hers whose teenage daughter died the week before. The mother was telling others that the death was an accident, when it was unquestionably a suicide. This saddened my friend greatly – not only the suicide itself, but also the family’s shame, so intense […]

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What’s Your Pleasure?

What’s Your Pleasure?

If you are depressed, stressed, or grieving, the term “pleasurable activities” may seem oxymoronic – no activity possibly could bring pleasure. Maybe you cannot even remember what gives you pleasure – or what once gave you pleasure no longer does. You may also think that pleasure is simply petty. If you feel so bad that […]

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Coping with the Suicide of a Loved One

Coping with the Suicide of a Loved One

    The grief, loss, and bewilderment following the suicide of a loved one can be overwhelming. Many reactions are common, ranging from everything from shock to anger to self blame to considering suicide for yourself.  There are questions, so many questions. “Why?” “What if…?” “What could I have done?” And there are few, if […]

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What to Tell Children of a Loved One’s Suicide?

What to Tell Children of a Loved One’s Suicide?

Often, adults agonize over what to tell young children when somebody in the child’s family dies by suicide. The question becomes even more painful when the person who dies by suicide is the mother or father of a young child. Some parents or other family members may want to lie to children about the cause […]

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Language about Suicide (Part 2): Who are Suicide Survivors?

Language about Suicide (Part 2): Who are Suicide Survivors?

UPDATE May 27, 2014: I have updated this post, to say that I no longer agree with the definitions below. Please see the post, “Wait, Who Is a Suicide Survivor Again?” I am leaving this post up because I’m told by bloggers far more experienced than I that you should never remove a post, only […]

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