Suicide w/ no warning -- what do you say/do? How do you make sense of it? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 02:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
swd12422's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 2,111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

A friend of mine from high school just lost her husband to suicide. He apparently was not depressed (or at least no one saw signs) and never gave any warning.

 

I am in shock. I didn't know him, haven't seen her since high school but we are friends of Facebook and that is how I found out. I cannot imagine what she is going through, and have no idea how to support her long distance.

 

On top of that, I am just stunned. It's my nature to explain things away, or at least to find a reason (even if I don't think it's a "good" one) for things that happen. There seems to be no reason here. So it's unbelievably sad for my friend and her kids, and I'm sad for her. And it's totally frightening to me that this could just happen. No warning. No signs. So really, it could happen to anyone, at any time. And yeah, we could all get hit by a bus tomorrow and have the same lack of warning, but suicide is different, I guess b/c it's not an accident.

 

I don't know what to say to her, what to do for her and the kids, and at the same time I am just terrified that something else like this will happen again, to my family or someone else's. Sorry for the rambling. My brain is reeling.

swd12422 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 02:41 PM
 
starling&diesel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: West Coast, Canada
Posts: 3,813
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)

I'm sorry to hear of your friend's husband's death.  It's hard to know what to say or how to response in these situations, having just done a Death Notification Course, I'll chime in with a few things I learned there, as well as on the job as a paramedic.

As for what to say ... will you be contacting her in person or via fb?  Either way, it's good to acknowledge her tragic and sudden loss, and not shy away from what has become her reality. 

Something like:  "Oh, [friend's name] ... I am so sad to hear of your tragic loss.  I cannot even begin to imagine what you are going through, but know that I am thinking of you and your children at this very difficult time."  Then be quiet, if you're talking to her in person.  Give her space to respond, or not to.

Stay away from mentions of him being "in a better place" or being "with God" or anything like that unless you know for an absolute fact that this would be a comfort to her.  Don't claim to understand how she's feeling.  Don't make offers like "Let me know if there's anything I can do" because most people will not take you up on open-ended suggestions like that.  Be specific.  "Let me know if I can cook your family a meal, or take the kids to the zoo for the day, or help you out with any of the errands that will come up in the next while." 

Anyway, must dash, or I would write more.  Again, sorry about the sad news. 


dust.gifFour-eyed tattooed fairy godmother queer, mama to my lucky star (5) and little bird (2.5). Resident storyteller at www.thestoryforest.com. Enchanting audiostories for curious kids. Come play in the forest!
starling&diesel is offline  
#3 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 03:04 PM
 
Storm Bride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 25,596
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by starling&diesel View Post

I'm sorry to hear of your friend's husband's death.  It's hard to know what to say or how to response in these situations, having just done a Death Notification Course, I'll chime in with a few things I learned there, as well as on the job as a paramedic.

As for what to say ... will you be contacting her in person or via fb?  Either way, it's good to acknowledge her tragic and sudden loss, and not shy away from what has become her reality. 

Something like:  "Oh, [friend's name] ... I am so sad to hear of your tragic loss.  I cannot even begin to imagine what you are going through, but know that I am thinking of you and your children at this very difficult time."  Then be quiet, if you're talking to her in person.  Give her space to respond, or not to.

Stay away from mentions of him being "in a better place" or being "with God" or anything like that unless you know for an absolute fact that this would be a comfort to her.  Don't claim to understand how she's feeling.  Don't make offers like "Let me know if there's anything I can do" because most people will not take you up on open-ended suggestions like that.  Be specific.  "Let me know if I can cook your family a meal, or take the kids to the zoo for the day, or help you out with any of the errands that will come up in the next while." 

Anyway, must dash, or I would write more.  Again, sorry about the sad news. 



All this. This is almost exactly what I think about any sudden loss.

 

As for the other aspect of it....it's not all that unlikely that he was depressed. People don't always know. I've struggled with depression - pretty severe, much of the time - most of my adult life. The times when people around me know I'm depressed aren't always when it's at its worst. I'm pretty sure that if you asked my friends and family how I was doing when i'm going through a phase fantasizing about suicide, they'd think I was just fine...and that I'm horribly depressed when I'm actually doing okay. Some men, in particular, won't talk about it (especially to their wives), because they think they should be able to "handle" it. Depression is a lot more complicated than people tend to think.

 

I'm not sure what to say about being terrified that it will happen again, though. That kind of fear is something that people have to work their way through on their own, ime.


Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing ribbonpb.gif Aaron Ambrose ribboncesarean.gif (11/07) ribbonpb.gif

Storm Bride is offline  
#4 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 03:22 PM
 
Lobeebee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

reaching out can mean alot to a person in grief.

Lobeebee is offline  
#5 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 03:25 PM
 
Katielady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Living in a van down by the river
Posts: 2,016
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I'm so sorry this happened to your friend, how awful.

 

I lost one of my best friends to suicide this past summer. It was also completely sudden and unexpected. One thing that bothered me was when people would say things like, "I never knew she was in so much pain," or "I wish she had just reached out," or "I guess this is what she wanted." Because to me, what happened to her was kind of like a mental health heart attack- she was a basically happy person who had a perfect storm of stress and other factors. I guess it's good to just avoid any speculation about the death and why it happened. You never know how the person's loved ones are processing it at the time.

 

I know that my friend's mom put the word out for the first memorial gathering that she didn't want anyone asking her about the why's of it, or focussing on the death at all- she just wanted people to share fond memories of her daughter and to celebrate her life. She didn't want her beautiful life to be defined by the horrible last 24 hours that led to her untimely death. So sharing some good memories might be welcomed.

 

And as others have said, specific offers of help like meals, etc. are always good. Just keep saying you're so sorry, and that you're here for her. My heart goes out to her, and to you, and anyone in this terrible situation.


SAHM to 6.5yo DS and 4yo DD. PCOS with two early m/cs. Married 8 yrs. Certified birth doula, writer, editor.

Some stuff I like: hbac.gifteapot2.GIFeat.gifnocirc.gifbftoddler.giffemalesling.GIFcrochetsmilie.gif read.gifcat.gif

Katielady is offline  
#6 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 03:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
swd12422's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 2,111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

Thank you for all the replies so far. I've just been bawling to myself here, hoping not to wake DS from his nap.

 

Make no mistake: My fear, or whatever it is, that if this could happen "with no warning" (and I agree something must have been there that no one saw), then we're all vulnerable in no way will prevent me from contacting her and offering her my support and prayers. I don't shy away from things like that. It's really two different questions that I have that don't impact one another. And especially after my grandfather's death went completely ignored by many of my "friends" last year, I don't plan to be that kind of friend. I cannot comprehend how anyone can blow off a friend's sibling's suicide to benefit their own comfort.

 

However, I am out of state, hundreds of miles away, and would LOVE to be able to take her kids for a night or bring dinners over and feed their freezer, etc. But I'm too far away. The best I can do is to send a card/flowers/charitable donation and call. And I'll call again in a few months, and a few months after. But what else? It just doesn't seem like it's enough. And we have not been *friends* since high school. We just found each other on FB a few years ago, and chat now and then online. So while I love her and our memories of school together, I don't want to go overboard and have it seem weird, since we've been out of touch for so long, KWIM?

 

swd12422 is offline  
#7 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 03:56 PM
 
MissSJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,473
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


My condolences to you and your friend swd.  I just wanted to mention that one way you could help with dinner for your friend is that you can order takeout for them and have it delivered.  I have done this with pizza before for my mom who lives across the country.

Quote:
Originally Posted by swd12422 View Post

Thank you for all the replies so far. I've just been bawling to myself here, hoping not to wake DS from his nap.

 

Make no mistake: My fear, or whatever it is, that if this could happen "with no warning" (and I agree something must have been there that no one saw), then we're all vulnerable in no way will prevent me from contacting her and offering her my support and prayers. I don't shy away from things like that. It's really two different questions that I have that don't impact one another. And especially after my grandfather's death went completely ignored by many of my "friends" last year, I don't plan to be that kind of friend. I cannot comprehend how anyone can blow off a friend's sibling's suicide to benefit their own comfort.

 

However, I am out of state, hundreds of miles away, and would LOVE to be able to take her kids for a night or bring dinners over and feed their freezer, etc. But I'm too far away. The best I can do is to send a card/flowers/charitable donation and call. And I'll call again in a few months, and a few months after. But what else? It just doesn't seem like it's enough. And we have not been *friends* since high school. We just found each other on FB a few years ago, and chat now and then online. So while I love her and our memories of school together, I don't want to go overboard and have it seem weird, since we've been out of touch for so long, KWIM?

 



MissSJ is offline  
#8 of 23 Old 01-27-2011, 04:59 PM
 
raelize's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 810
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Katielady View Post

I'm so sorry this happened to your friend, how awful.

 

I lost one of my best friends to suicide this past summer. It was also completely sudden and unexpected. One thing that bothered me was when people would say things like, "I never knew she was in so much pain," or "I wish she had just reached out," or "I guess this is what she wanted." Because to me, what happened to her was kind of like a mental health heart attack- she was a basically happy person who had a perfect storm of stress and other factors. I guess it's good to just avoid any speculation about the death and why it happened. You never know how the person's loved ones are processing it at the time.

 

I know that my friend's mom put the word out for the first memorial gathering that she didn't want anyone asking her about the why's of it, or focussing on the death at all- she just wanted people to share fond memories of her daughter and to celebrate her life. She didn't want her beautiful life to be defined by the horrible last 24 hours that led to her untimely death. So sharing some good memories might be welcomed.

 

And as others have said, specific offers of help like meals, etc. are always good. Just keep saying you're so sorry, and that you're here for her. My heart goes out to her, and to you, and anyone in this terrible situation.



yes.exactly this.  it is a mind/brain attack.  90% of people who die by suicide have an underlying mental illnes (depression, bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia) and 75% also have an anxiety disorder.  They do not want to die anymore than someone who has a heart attack or cancer.  it is most likely that he was suffering for a long time and that though it looks sudden, it wasn't for him.  to die by suicide is a whole process and it takes time to get to the point where you see no other option, where your pain and anxiety were so great that you couldn't take it anymore.  the same way that someone's heart attack doesn't just happen over night, it is a process to get to where you emotionally and psychologically can not sustain that level of pain and anxiety.  

reach out and say i am so sorry, this is horrible.  i am thinking of you and your kids.

and know that whatever level of confusion you have, hers is probably 10 times that

and if she is angry, or weird, or lashes out at you (for anything at all) remember that her world has just been rocked to her core, she is now a widow and single parent, and has to try and get her kids through this, so give her the benefit of the doubt.  if she ignores your email or phone call, just try again next week and continue to call her once or twice a week, just to see how she is and to let her know that you are here for her and are thinking about her.

raelize is offline  
#9 of 23 Old 01-30-2011, 02:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
swd12422's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 2,111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

MissSJ, that's a great idea, thanks! I always think of cooking for people, but it never occurred to me to have something delivered to them.

Raelize, thanks for that perspective, it makes sense. I know I don't have to understand or have a reason to explain away everything, but if anything could make this situation worse for her it's that it was apparently completely out of the blue. Thankfully she has (his) family and close friends nearby to support her.

swd12422 is offline  
#10 of 23 Old 01-30-2011, 12:01 PM
 
VisionaryMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 3,736
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post

As for the other aspect of it....it's not all that unlikely that he was depressed. People don't always know. I've struggled with depression - pretty severe, much of the time - most of my adult life. The times when people around me know I'm depressed aren't always when it's at its worst. I'm pretty sure that if you asked my friends and family how I was doing when i'm going through a phase fantasizing about suicide, they'd think I was just fine...and that I'm horribly depressed when I'm actually doing okay.

This has been my experience as well. I checked myself into a psychiatric hospital on a suicide watch in 2008. Everyone - my husband included - was shocked. They didn't think things seemed that bad. There's just no way to look at someone and know whether they're depressed and whether they're *that* depressed if they are.


It's us: DH , DS ; DD ; and me . Also there's the . And the 3 . I . Oh, and .
VisionaryMom is offline  
#11 of 23 Old 01-30-2011, 02:18 PM
 
raelize's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 810
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

yes to that storm bride and visionary mom.  

 

to the OP - i don't mean to say that your friend was out of touch with her husband.  he was just very good at hiding his depression/mental illness.  but there is no out of the blue with suicide.  you don't just wake up one morning and say, hey, i think i'm gonna hang myself today.  perhaps he had a quick spiral into depression, but if he got to the point where he was suicidal, he was probably suffering with a long term illness, probably had times when he was severely depressed and times when he wasn't. And he was very good at hiding it.  

 

and, as a suicide survivor (i lost my brother in March 2010), it doesn't matter if there were warnings or not.  it is just as devastating when it is someone who had a known history of mental illness/suicide attempts dies by suicide as when it is seemingly out of the blue.  and saying that it is worse, or implying it, is just offensive.  i know you don't mean any offense, but i am letting you know how it sounds.  Suicide kills almost as many people every year as breast cancer (36,000 to suicide and 40,000 to breast cancer).  it happens to people from all walks of life, and you would be surprised how many people you know who have lost someone to suicide.  We don't talk about it, but we should. it is the stigma that kills people.  so, when you talk about how horrible it is cause it was "out of the blue" you may unknowingly offend someone.  

 

there are very good online resources, and she probably wants to look into a suicide survivor support group.  it can be found here:

http://www.afsp.org/index.cfm?page_id=FEE33687-BD31-F739-D66C210657168295

raelize is offline  
#12 of 23 Old 01-30-2011, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
swd12422's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 2,111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

OMG, I really hope that no one took my posts to mean that I think no apparent warning signs make the whole situation worse. (I'm exhausted and didn't reread my posts, but I hope I didn't say that...) My implication was that it was not worse, but perhaps more of a shock than if he had been in and out of care for an emotional disorder recently, or if he had attempted in the past. A shock the way a sudden-but-immediate accidental death is, as opposed to a death after a long, drawn-out physical illness where the prognosis has never been good. Crap, I feel like I'm digging myself a deeper hole here. It's not like one way is better or worse, easier or harder, than another. But sometimes there is more of a surprise/shock than others. That was all I meant. I think it's very different when the family is completely blindsided by an incident than when it's a long-time, expected, and natural-due-to-old-age outcome. Doesn't make it more painful, but it makes it more of a shock.

 

I'm so, so sorry to all of you who have had this touch your lives so intimately, and of course would never want to make light of it, or diminish your experiences in any way. I sincerely hope I have not offended anyone, and am in tears at the thought that I have. I am so upset by all of this and don't always choose the best words or accurately convey my thoughts, and for that I am deeply sorry. As I said in an earlier post, I try to understand things, to make sense of them, even when there really is no way to do that or when it really won't "help" a situation. It's my nature, and I haven't managed to learn that there is not much comfort in an explanation in circumstances such as this. The more important part of my OP was what I could do for my friend, but I also was trying to sort through my feelings about this, as DH has suffered from depression for a long time and DS has a bad genetic history of mental and emotional illness that scares me to no end. (And yes, I have seen that some of the "deepest" parts of his depression had far fewer "symptoms" than others when he thought he was actually feeling pretty good. So I get what you all mean about there being a history there, whether my friend and their family were able to see it or not.)

 

I'm off to cry some more now. I can't believe how upsetting this is, and now I've spread that to some of you and I feel awful. I do appreciate your pointing it out to me though. I never want to be insensitive. Again, I am truly sorry.

swd12422 is offline  
#13 of 23 Old 01-30-2011, 05:10 PM
 
raelize's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 810
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

No, SWD, i didn't think you meant to offend.  Suicide, and death in general, is so charged, and unfortunately its one of those things where you don't realize how touchy situations and words can be till you are on the other side, you know?  but, i never thought  you meant to offend. i just wanted to warn you in case you did say something like that.  i have had people say that almost as a contest about who must be grieving more.  

 

if you are worried about your son and DH you should also check out AFSP and see what kind of info they have.  Depression does have a genetic component, and chances of suicide increases when there is a family history.  i think about this with my daughters A LOT.  they were around when their uncle died and even though they are young, the older one (5) knows a lot about what happened (she doesn't know the exact manner of death, but she does know that he was sick for a long time) and they knew him.

 

my plan is to make suicide and depression one of those things like safe sex, driving, drugs and alcohol, and guns in houses that is discussed A LOT growing up and figuring out ways together to deal with these dangerous situations.  we were talking yesterday about when people feel so terrible they want to end their life.  i related it to her celiac and how we had to search for the right doctor and it took us a while but kept at it till we found the right doc.  that depression is the same thing.  you need to keep trying different approaches and doctors until you find a scenario that works.  

 

we participated in 2 walks last year and i plan to continue to do that as dd grows up and have her be a part of it.  for it to be something that is on her radar.  it is secrets that drives suicide.  the shame and stigma that people feel, that is why they don't reach out.  their anxiety is just multiplied when thinking about how horrified their loved ones will be when they tell them they want to die.  open the closets and let your kids know it is ok to talk about being depressed and suicidal feelings.

use this as your sputnik moment. learn how to prevent suicide and use that when dealing with your kids and husband.  i imagine you are so upset cause you can relate to your friend's situation.

raelize is offline  
#14 of 23 Old 02-01-2011, 07:38 PM
 
mamaof5boys's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 519
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I don't have a lot of time to write, but just wanted to say hugs to you all!! OP I just wanted to share that I completely hear you when you share your concerns about your DH and DS. It could eat me alive if I lived in constant fear about it, but the reality of it is mental illness or not, it was a choice. I completely get that my DH was not in a mental state to change the decision he made, but there was absolutely nothing I could've done to change it. Likewise with my children, I am here to do absolutely everything I can to help them, but ultimately it's their choice. I can't live each day in constant fear and worry. Does that make any sense?

Also- I completely agree with PPs about gift cards, cards, donations, etc. Looking back one of the best things ever was a friend who emailed me a short note every day for the first several weeks to let me know she was thinking of us. Here I am 18 months later, somedays feeling like I'm struggling more now than back then. I have been fortunate enough to have amazing support, but the hardest thing ever is to ask for help. What's meant so much is to have the help even now. The surprise card, money, grocery gift cards, etc....

Thanks for being such a gentle spirit, and showing such amazing concern for your friend!!
mamaof5boys is offline  
#15 of 23 Old 02-01-2011, 08:31 PM
 
raelize's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 810
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


is it a choice to die of cancer? or of a brain tumor? or a heart attack?   on some level, when you abuse your health and heart by lack of a good diet and exercise, then it is a choice to die by heart attack, right? so, i guess that is same thing.

its not a choice.  nobody truly wants to die.  they just want the pain to stop.  they feel (for lots of different reasons) that there is no other way to end the pain/anxiety/suffering.  their world becomes a tunnel vision and the only answer is suicide.   they can no longer maintain that level of pain/anxiety.  it is NOT. EVER. A. choice.  

there is an excellent book called dying to be free.  it does a very good job explaining how someone feels when they are suicidal.

 

it is one thing to say, it is no one's FAULT but the one who died. yes, that is true.  but that is not the same as saying it is a choice.  no one in their right mind chooses to die.  but that is the point - they are NOT in their right mind.  

 

Psychiatrists and psychologists die by suicide.  My cousin is a neurologist.  a friend of his was a psychiatrist/nuerologist.  she had also suffered from manic depression for a long time.  one night, she got up from the couch, told her husband that she was getting a drink, and went into the garage and hung herself.  now, of all people, she should have known how to save herself, wouldn't you think?  that is how ill she was.  she couldn't reach out for help.

 

it is never a choice.  and there is a lot one can do to prevent it.  to just simply throw up your hands and say, well? what can i do to stop it? if they want to kill themselves, i guess they will!  is just ridiculous.  is that how you will deal with sexual behavior?  if they want to have sex what can i do?  if kids want to go and drink when they are 12? what can i do?  if they are playing at a friend's house and they find a gun? what can i do???   i guess that is the best answer about teaching someone how to protect themselves, right?

 

not every person who dies by suicide can be saved, but i'd say most of them can.  we need to teach children at a young age what it is and how to protect themselves.  if there is a family history of mental illness then the parents need to know what to look out for and how to reach out to their kids.  

and mamaof5boys - if you lost your husband to suicide than you should really check out prevention information for your sons.  the risk of suicide for them increases dramatically once your husband killed himself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaof5boys View Post

I don't have a lot of time to write, but just wanted to say hugs to you all!! OP I just wanted to share that I completely hear you when you share your concerns about your DH and DS. It could eat me alive if I lived in constant fear about it, but the reality of it is mental illness or not, it was a choice. I completely get that my DH was not in a mental state to change the decision he made, but there was absolutely nothing I could've done to change it. Likewise with my children, I am here to do absolutely everything I can to help them, but ultimately it's their choice. I can't live each day in constant fear and worry. Does that make any sense?

Also- I completely agree with PPs about gift cards, cards, donations, etc. Looking back one of the best things ever was a friend who emailed me a short note every day for the first several weeks to let me know she was thinking of us. Here I am 18 months later, somedays feeling like I'm struggling more now than back then. I have been fortunate enough to have amazing support, but the hardest thing ever is to ask for help. What's meant so much is to have the help even now. The surprise card, money, grocery gift cards, etc....

Thanks for being such a gentle spirit, and showing such amazing concern for your friend!!


raelize is offline  
#16 of 23 Old 02-01-2011, 10:51 PM
 
mamaof5boys's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 519
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Obviously my comments have triggered something for you.  This is my opinion, and my experience, and I appreciate your response, however, I would appreciate respect regarding my comments as well.  There is more to the situation than I could ever explain, and unless you have walked in my shoes it is completely unfair to make blanket statements.  Of course I do not believe that anyone intentionally  asks for a mental illness, or cancer, or any illness, however, how one chooses to treat that illness is a choice.

 

OP- We do everything we can to protect and take care of people we love, I have learned that living in fear just eats away at our core.  I wish you blessings and peace as you journey through this experience. hug2.gif

mamaof5boys is offline  
#17 of 23 Old 02-02-2011, 07:20 AM - Thread Starter
 
swd12422's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 2,111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

I totally get what both of you are saying. I know this is a very emotionally-charged topic, and I also know that everyone's experience is a little different, and that leads to different perspectives.

 

I just erased a huge post about agreeing with both of you on certain points you have made, but I don't want to upset anyone else more than I may have already. I know that when things like this happen, I tend to take things other people say on the topic very personally, and I get offended when it sounds like they are arguing with me or imposing their own ideas on my experience. I don't want that for anyone here, I don't want this thread to be the source of any further pain or hurt feelings, and I don't want it to be closed by the mods b/c I am really appreciative of all of you sharing your thoughts and experiences here with me. It's really helping me to process what happened last week, and hopefully will help me understand my friend's situation so I can be comfort to her rather than causing her more discomfort and pain.

swd12422 is offline  
#18 of 23 Old 02-02-2011, 10:58 AM
 
momtoS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,755
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

My brother took his life last week. So shocking to all of us. Never had any clues that he was in pain or thinking about suicide. Never.  I can't imagine him doing this and hurting us (especially my parents) like this.  It is so hard to understand. I talked to him the day before (maybe less than 24 hours before). I just can't wrap my head around it. I can't understand it. I went to the funeral home to plan his funeral today....because my parents aren't able. I just struggle through most of the day......

momtoS is offline  
#19 of 23 Old 03-14-2011, 06:29 AM
 
AntoninBeGonin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Northwest suburbs, Illinois.
Posts: 3,026
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by momtoS View Post

My brother took his life last week. So shocking to all of us. Never had any clues that he was in pain or thinking about suicide. Never.  I can't imagine him doing this and hurting us (especially my parents) like this.  It is so hard to understand. I talked to him the day before (maybe less than 24 hours before). I just can't wrap my head around it. I can't understand it. I went to the funeral home to plan his funeral today....because my parents aren't able. I just struggle through most of the day......


I'm so sorry hug2.gif candle.gif

 


Reneé, 34 year old mom to Antonin 8/04 and Arianna 9/06  (6 weeks) 5/08. Married to Matt since 6/03 .  
AntoninBeGonin is offline  
#20 of 23 Old 03-14-2011, 08:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
swd12422's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 2,111
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

OMG, MomtoS, I never saw your post til today! I'm so sorry for your loss.

My friend has been posting messages to her DH on Facebook when she gets really down. Her posts are met with TONS of supportive notes from friends and family, and she says it helps. It's a very public way to express what I consider extremely private emotions and thoughts, and I'm sure a lot of people would cringe at the suggestion to do that, but I guess that's one way to keep his memory alive and to let people know that she needs a little encouragement. I'm not recommending you do that, but definitely don't be shy about asking your loved ones (friends and family alike, or even just random neighbors) for help, whether it's a shoulder to cry on, or just an errand you don't feel you want to run. People want to help, but they often don't know how.

 

swd12422 is offline  
#21 of 23 Old 03-14-2011, 11:38 AM
 
Storm Bride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 25,596
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by momtoS View Post

My brother took his life last week. So shocking to all of us. Never had any clues that he was in pain or thinking about suicide. Never.  I can't imagine him doing this and hurting us (especially my parents) like this.  It is so hard to understand.

 

I don't know your brother, but I do know depression (at least my depression - it does seem to manifest a little differently from one person to another). When I'm suicidal, it would never even cross my mind that my death would hurt anybody, because it would never cross my mind that I matter enough to anyone for that. I pulled myself away from it when ds1 was about six, by reminding myself that if he were the one who found my body, that experience would scar him for life...but I still didn't really believe it would hurt him. I thought he'd be better off without me (and  my ex was barely employed and refusing work for no reason, doing nothing around the house, barely interacting with ds1, and sliding down a path of crack addiction that eventually ended up with him on the streets, then in jail). I truly believed that the best thing I could do for my son was remove myself from his life. Depression is really, really, really ugly.


Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing ribbonpb.gif Aaron Ambrose ribboncesarean.gif (11/07) ribbonpb.gif

Storm Bride is offline  
#22 of 23 Old 03-14-2011, 05:31 PM
 
cisonit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 24
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Sad to hear of all the suicides that have taken place but the only way to make any sense of it is to not try to. I work as a Mental Health Therapist and before I graduated, I worked as a Psych Tech and sadly, a lot of men don't show obvious signs and tend to be more lethal in the method of how they commit suicide. Not sure who is to blame, society, the family, the person or all 3 but at a certain point it may help to reach out to some organization that does address this issue...maybe even volunteer some time to prevent someone from doing the same thing. It's a little more acceptable in a lot of societies/cultures for a women to express her emotions and reach out for help than a MAN(smh). Not to say suicide with no signs do not happen with woman but it is not as common.

 

I will keep the families/friends that have shared loss in my prayers!!!

cisonit is offline  
#23 of 23 Old 08-09-2012, 04:52 AM
 
Julie Williams's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

To Raelize....loved this about your post:

 

my plan is to make suicide and depression one of those things like safe sex, driving, drugs and alcohol, and guns in houses that is discussed A LOT growing up and figuring out ways together to deal with these dangerous situations.  we were talking yesterday about when people feel so terrible they want to end their life.  i related it to her celiac and how we had to search for the right doctor and it took us a while but kept at it till we found the right doc.  that depression is the same thing.  you need to keep trying different approaches and doctors until you find a scenario that works.  

 

I lost a nephew to suicide in October 2010 and this plan to make suicide prevention as everyday as safe sex, drugs, etc. is exactly what I have been asking everyone I meet to do.  We have fire drills and physical screenings in schools but we do nothing for mental health.    I have named it the "sad drill."  So it's not whether or not you are sad at some point, but WHEN you are sad that I address.  Who will you talk to?  It probably won't be a parent.....what trusted adult does your child have in her/his life?  Name that adult, make sure your child knows who she/he will talk to...

 

We all have great sadness or questioning of purpose in our lives at some point, some to a far more severe degree.  But parenting magazines seldom address preparing for the worst.  We all buy blankets, diapers, educational toys, videos, music, etc in an attempt to make our children happy and healthy.  But not once during my pregnancy or early infant and toddler years did I ever consider preparing for if they are NOT happy.

 

Now I talk about Will all the time. I tell my friends and anyone I meet that they are free to "use" my nephew's death as a way to say, "Honey, I me a woman whose nephew died by suicide.  I can't let that happen to you.  If you ever feel so sad that it hurts too much, who do you think you could talk to?  me?  a neighbor? an aunt/uncle? a teacher?"  And then I'd call that trusted adult to let them know that they are "on call!"  

 

You can all visit www.mentalhealthscreening.org to see their SOS program for schools and start using their A.C.T. motto if someone even hints at being depressed:  Acknowledge that their is a problem, tell them you Care and don't want them to hurt themselves, then Tell a trusted adult.

Julie Williams is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off