I belong to a community called: Alliance of Hope. It’s for people who are dealing with suicide grief. Although I don’t participate as I used to, I do get email updates of what they’re doing.
This is worth sharing. It was sent by the founder: Ronnie Walker who lost her son to suicide, years ago. This is what she has to say:
Last week, we asked our Facebook community to help us design awareness material to educate the public about the experience of suicide loss survivors — for example, the complex emotions, physical or financial challenges, impact on family and friends, etc.
We asked: “If there was one thing you would want people to know, what would it be?”
Here are some of the many responses we received:
“Be patient with us – our lives changed in an instant and we are dealing with physical, emotional, spiritual and mental anguish.”
“Don’t be afraid to ask what happened. Most of us want to talk about our loved one all the time and want people to be aware that we don’t want other people to experience this pain!
“…Very few people understand. In fact in 2.8 years I have not encountered a single person who has understood except the people here on Alliance of Hope.
“Be careful shoving ‘suicide prevention’ information down our throats. We live with enough guilt, we don’t need someone handing us a checklist of all things we coulda/shoulda done differently.”
“…that after losing someone to suicide, we ourselves are at risk of becoming depressed and really need support even if they can’t understand our experience.
“I would like people to know that our loved ones shouldn’t be criticized or blamed for their actions. There are so many complex issues involved in most suicides. My own son died following a battle of many years against mental illness and it really hurts me to think that some people (who have very little knowledge of what he went through) would accuse him of being selfish or thoughtless for ending his pain.”
“…be mindful that it hurts when people make comments like … ‘I want to kill myself’ in passing. They say it because their day isn’t going right – not aware that to someone who has experienced loss in this way it’s like laughing in their face or pouring salt in a never healing wound.
“This kind of grief takes sooo much energy…..”