Mayo Clinic Connect
Dealing with the feelings of loss after a person known to you commits suicide,
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@anndomico The process is different for all of us.
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I didn't see discussion on suicide loss before. Did I miss it. My son committed suicide.
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This discussion was just posted and begun today. Please feel free to share as you are comfortable doing so.
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Well, my son died on August 13th 2016 and the way I handled it was to find a grief counselor. She specializes in grief caused by acute traumatic circumstances such as murder and suicide. I didn't even know that specialty existed
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@georgette12– Thanks for sharing about the grief counselor. It may help others to know that specialty does exist.
There is also an excellent website/open forum called Survivors of Suicide Loss. Helped me a lot. It's broken down also by type of loss .. police officers, military, parents, children, friends etc. I don't have the link in front of me but easy to find.
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I found a site called Alliance Of Hope which helped a lot. I am not discouraging anyone from sharing here. It does help to share with others that have had a loved one committing suicide. My father committed suicide nearly 44 years ago. Something I still deal with at times but have come to accept.
@parus @georgette12 @anndomico
Would any of you like to share some of the feelings you experienced after the suicide of your friend/loved one and speak to how you came to acceptance and/or moving through this experience?
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Here is some information from the Survivors of Suicide website, https://elunanetwork.org/resources/survivors-of-suicide-sos-group-finder/, that I thought might be helpful to you. I realized that all losses due to death are overwhelming but that loss to suicide must carry an extra burden of grief.
After you read this short excerpt could you share something about your own personal experience? For example, can you share in what way a grief counselor was helpful to you? How did friends and family react to your loss? Was it different than a more natural death? Please share as you are comfortable doing so.
"When you have experienced the death of a family member or loved one by suicide you can feel overwhelmed, desperately sad, lonely, angry, confused, guilty and somehow responsible. You may also discover that friends, co-workers and other family members don’t always know what to say or how to be supportive and comforting. We know that the bereavement associated with a suicide death is different than other deaths; there is the suddenness of the death and there is often no easy – or clear – explanation as to why suicide was seen as a choice.
It is always important to get help in the aftermath of suicide death. That help might be from a therapist who specializes in grief and loss; it might be through a support group specifically designed for individuals who are dealing with the loss of a loved one to suicide. Survivor of Suicide (SOS) groups can help participants feel less alone and understood by others who have experienced a loss to suicide. “Being with understanding others helps me try to figure out where I am, where I was, and where I might be headed in this process.”
I did all of the suggestions recommended by Survivors of suicide/alliance of hope organization. It was and still is vital to continue grief counseling and it is especially important to share with others who are survivors. The first thing I will say is that GUILT is what I deal with most. Because I'm his mother. I should have been able to stop him
I appreciate your sharing these feelings. I notice you use the phrase, "I should have been able to stop him." Wondering how realistic that really is. As adults, we each have a free will to act as we choose. Can we really impose our choices on others? (My answer to that question would be "no.")
Would others in our group like to respond to that as well?
Well I have suffered from depression and suicide attempts. I can tell you that I didn't want to die I just wanted the emotional pain to stop. There's nothing my family could of done to stop me. It was my choice. When you are that depressed you are not thinking clearly. You are in the dark and can't find your way out. I don't want you to feel guilty, it's ok and normal and perfectly understandable. I hope this helps. I hope you can find peace i have no doubt your son loved you getting much. Ultimately I decided to save myself. I didn't want to die. I received therapy and it's taken years to build my life back to where I can feel hopeful but it tore my family apart and I've lost relationships so it still affects my life. Hope you can find comfort and peace
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I noticedthat several people have reached out to your post, but you haven't responded. How long ago did this happen? If it's recent, I can understand your not wanting to respond about it. Please just let us know that you're OK, and are taking care of yourself. We understand.
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@anndomico – I'm glad you started this discussion, as I can imagine dealing with the feelings of loss after a person you know commits suicide is incredibly painful, and getting some support is really important. Seems like others have also experienced intense pain as a result of a loss like this.
I also like to invite into this discussion some other Connect members who may be interested in reading and following this discussion (see "+Follow" at bottom of the initial post) @basslakeview @xfirerose @rmftucker @tujaded @sadiesmom @tracyeylens @roochie @liz223 @Gray @tabi @reneee @ikampel2 @johndoe1. Hoping they may also post and share some of their experiences and insights, as they feel comfortable.
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Regarding guilt…when someone you love commits suicide….I definitely intellectually know that it was their choice. But so far I've never talked to anyone who doesn't feel guilt.
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