The one about suicide

I just wrote all of this, and then I crashed Microsoft Word and LOST.THE.WHOLE.THING. So here is round two.  Let’s hope I’m as smart as I was twenty minutes ago.

I was going to hold off writing this until suicide prevention month but then two things crossed my mind:

1. If there is anyone else out there going through what I have then I don’t want to wait to talk abut this.

2. If there is anyone reading this who is thinking, “suicided is going to help my loved ones, they will be better without me,” I want to tell you YOU ARE WRONG.  In fact, it’s been EIGHTEEN YEARS, since my father killed himself and I’m still impacted by it.  You are not doing a good thing, you are not making your loved ones life easier, you are not helping anyone.  In fact, in the end, there is a good chance your loved ones will end up really really pissed off at you.  I wouldn’t give up my husband and kids for anything, but there are a lot, A LOT of moments in my life that sucked, that I can look back and say with certainty would never have happened had I never been involved in a suicide.  There are things I did at school, trust issues I have, things I’ve done to my family, people I’ve let walk on me and stuff that I’ve experimented with that looking back at my life I wish I hadn’t.  So please, read this and take a moment to learn what, in my experience suicide does to your family, to your loved ones, to the life you are leaving behind, and then maybe think again before making the choice you are about to make.  

I was twelve when my father killed himself.  That is young.  That is a very impressionable age.  Eighteen years later I can say that I kind of wish I never knew.  I wish people lied to me until I was older, old enough to say, “meh, really he killed himself, gee I never knew.” Instead of being that young and doing every single thing wrong beginning the day I found out.  When you are twelve you don’t fully understand loss. What you do understand is that people are suddenly really nice to you.  As a kid I learned that the boy I had a crush on was nicer to me for an entire week because my dad had died.  I learned that the mean girls were nice for a few days, and I learned that people around me were saying, “go easy on her, she just lost her dad.”  Not every twelve year old would react like me, but my reaction? 

I CAN GET IN AS MUCH TROUBLE AS I WANT TO NOW BECAUSE NO ONE IS REALLY GOING TO GET MAD AT ME.

Can you see the flaw in that thought?  I was never grounded, I never really got in trouble, teachers walked on egg shells around me and I spent years thinking I never had to be accountable for my actions.  I made horrible life decisions, acted radically, was mean and pushy and a stuck up little brat.  Why?  Because my dad killed himself and who was going to dare argue with me.

Having someone commit suicide in your family, and then listening to the whispers makes you start to wonder, “he was my dad, he was crazy I must be crazy too.”  I’ll never know why but I do know that my coping mechanism was to embrace that.  It made me WANT to be crazy because obviously it was my legacy.  If I got dumped I over reacted and publicly cried and acted like an idiot because that is what someone “like me” should do.  If my friends did something I didn’t like I was horrible to them until I got my way, or until they felt sorry enough for what they had done.  I was a horrible friend OFTEN.

Let’s talk about the biggest impacts suicide had on me.

The first one I only discovered recently while talking with my husband.  After talking to him about it, I recognize a pattern in every relationship I’ve ever had. In order for you to understand you should know the one biggest thing that happened first.  One month before my dad successfully killed himself he had a failed attempt.  My family chose to tell me.  When he got out of the hospital he called me and this is what he said, “I will never do that to you again, I love you princess, I PROMISE I will never do that again, I am so sorry.”

Like any eleven year old (He tried it within a week of my birthday) I believed him.  

One month later he was dead.

Because of this I’ve always found it very hard to believe someone could love me.  This is a nasty cycle though because before they could love me, I would get so consumed in being loved that I would try every stupid thing to make people love me.  Because I craved love, from guys.  I didn’t realize it until years later that I was trying to fill a void, trying to convince myself I was capable of being loved.  It wasn’t until a year ago that I found myself saying out loud, “My own dad didn’t love me enough to stay alive, what did I do wrong to deserve that.” On the off chance I convinced a guy to love me I spent the rest of the time doing two things:

1. Thinking they were cheating on me, or just about to leave me because in my mind, someone had already broken a huge promise to me, and I just couldn’t believe that I was really able to be loved, because if so then why wasn’t my dad still alive?

2. I would destroy the relationship.  So, while I was spending half of my time convinced they would leave me, I was spending the other half of my time giving them a reason to.  I would cheat on them, or just be obnoxious, or accuse them of cheating, or not caring enough.  Because when it all boiled down, as much as I wanted to be loved I was happier when the relationship ended.

Why was I happier?  Because it proved me right.  “I knew you never really loved me,” became a comfortable place to be.  While half of my body was dying to be loved, the other half already knew that no one loved anyone forever, guys broke promises and relationships ALWAYS END.  I was cute in high school, guys liked me, that meant sadly, there was never a shortage of guys to torment me as I turned around and tormented them right back.  Each serious relationship would end and the first thing that always came to mind was suicide.  Because when you are young it doesn’t occur to you that a high school breakup after a month is probably not serious enough to warrant a night of crying let alone a suicide.  But when your father has killed himself, it becomes a logical and rational response to a child.

I’ve been with my husband for ten years.  He has more patience then God to deal with me. It doesn’t matter that he’s never cheated on me, that he never will, that in my mind I KNOW HE WILL NEVER CHEAT ON ME, that doesn’t mean that the little girl in me doesn’t spend every day waiting for the other shoe to drop.  I expect him to find someone less crazy, or someone who loads the dishwasher right, or who has a devout love of folding laundry.  I’m honest with him and have admitted that when he goes to the gym there are times I’ve used the Find My Phone ap to see if he was really there.  Then I’ve even admitted that my head is so fucked up I’m sure he drove to the gym, dropped off his car and his phone and got in the car with a girl and left so that when I checked it would say he was at the gym. 

MY GOD IMAGINE LIVING WITH ME.

But, there is a reason I married him and one big reason is that my husband has always let me be as crazy as I want to be.  He’s listened to me, he talks to me and he understands that after what happened in my life, at such a young age it is hard to believe that something is really going to go right in my life. I’ve taken him to my counselor before where I admitted that I don’t believe my husband can love me.  I have so many flaws.  I don’t love me.  I mean, how can I love me if my own dad couldn’t love me.  How can my husband love me when my own blood couldn’t?  But alas, my husband just shakes his head, tells me I’m crazy and gives me a hug letting me know it’s all going to be alright.  I can’t tell you how hard I’ve pushed him away.  Before our wedding, in fact the night before I almost ran away.  I didn’t believe that I was getting married.  I didn’t believe that someone could want to be married for life.  I was going to leave, not show up.  But that same night, after dinner, with no inkling I was going to run he looked at me in a parking lot and said, “We don’t have to get married, I just want to take care of you, that’s all I want.”  Those words were enough to convince me to marry him, and boy am I glad I did, but that doesn’t mean I don’t make life hard on him every day.  After all, I will never load the dishwasher his way.

When someone so close to you kills them self after PROMISING they won’t you start to expect the worst.  The worst becomes a happy place.  When the worst doesn’t happen it is confusing.  It’s almost impossible to understand.  Happiness becomes an uncomfortable place to live.  So you self destruct.  You find ways to get in trouble.  You find ways to make life hard.  You search for depression and let it envelope you in because it’s all you know and it’s comfy, like hot cocoa and peppermint schnapps on a cold day.  It’s hard living life like that.  It’s hard waking up every day waiting for the other shoe to drop.  It is a strange existence to live in a world where happiness is hard, and when bad things finally happen it feels like a relief.  Like you can breath again.  I’m the kind of person who used to do homework and then not even turn it in.  I would do it because I knew I could, but I wouldn’t turn it in because I knew it would get me in trouble, and after a while I was more comfortable when I was in trouble.  When I met my husband he never yelled at me.  He never got mad at me.  I couldn’t handle it.  I remember fighting with him on the porch of his house once, and he would just get silent and want to walk away and all I could think is, “Please start yelling at me I would rather have you yelling and mad then walking away from me.”  Then he would yell, and I would cry but it was soooo much better then watching someone walk away, even if it was just to take time to cool down.

I started to expect that everyone around me was going to kill themselves.  I remember my mom and my step dad (who I refer to only as step dad in this story, I always refer to him as my dad) got in a fight.  She went to bed but he went outside.  Twenty minutes passed and panic filled me.  This was a long time ago because we still had the hot tub out back.  I went out back, and looked for him.  I didn’t see him.  The cover was still on the hot tub.  I just knew he had killed himself.  I had visions of him in the hot tub, with the cover on floating there dead.  Because to me, killing yourself after a fight was logical.  I panicked around my room for about five minutes before he came in.  He must have  been sitting up on the hill in a shadow where I couldn’t see him, but he saw me, and he must have known exactly what I was thinking because he came in my room and told me he was sorry he had worried me and that he was going to bed.  

It’s horrible that a girl should think like that.  It’s a hard terrible life worrying that I’m going to walk into a room and find a dead person.  It’s horrible to assume that any time I upset anyone they would just kill themselves.

Suicide makes loving other people impossible.  Since I knew boyfriends would leave it was okay to love them because I knew the outcome.  But other people in my life will find me very closed up.  I hate hugging.  It feels suffocating (my dad suffocated himself).  I don’t like being touched.  I don’t like people too close to me.  I’m not affectionate.  This is normal to me.  Now imagine being the people in my life.  Imagine being my family.  Imagine being my mom or stepdad or grandma or cousin that I won’t hug.  I’m not stupid, I know how hard that is for them.  But I can’t change who I am, I can’t unlearn eighteen years of being closed off and I don’t know any better.  So now, the suicide hasn’t only impacted me, it’s impacted the people around me.  I’ve had people going through hard times in there life and no matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t figure out how to go up to them and hug them and tell them it’s okay.  That response is confusing to me.  For some reason my husband has always been the exception to the hug rule.  I love hugging him, always have.  But other guys, would hug me for just a second too long and I would panic, start saying I couldn’t breath, and freak out.  When someone does that your natural response is to hug them more, which would put me in hysterics, in tears and otherwise totally freaking the fuck out.  THIS ISN’T NORMAL BEHAVIOR.  My husband knows about it though.  He’s seen someone  come up to me and want a hug and he’s watched me back away and try to get out of it.  He’s even spoken up before and said, “she doesn’t like hugs,” hoping they would stop, and when they replied, “but it’s okay it’s me,” and kept hugging me he’s gotten in the way before, stopped them, gently pushed them away and loudly said, “NO SHE DOES NOT LIKE HUGS.” How do you tell people that?  How do you tell someone you’re so fucked up you can’t even hug?  

How do you explain to people all of your irrational fears?  I’m afraid of everything, of the whole world.  I’m terrified my kids will die.  I’m afraid my new puppy will die (because shocker, my last one got ran over and it was MY FAULT), I’m afraid the world is going to end in a few short months.  How do you admit that sometimes I’m afraid to love my kids all the way because maybe it will hurt less when they die?  These aren’t normal thoughts that normal people have?  

On top of all of my own irrationalities I have to deal with those around me.  My dads family who  refused to believe that even though he threatened suicide millions of times before that he actually killed himself.  Instead every time I see them I have to hear about how he must have been murdered.  I’ve heard so many murder theories I even believed them for a while.  But that’s not real life, this isn’t a book and he really did kill himself.  Do you know how hard it was to visit his mom, my grandma every week and watch her struggle between wanting to love me because I was the only thing she had left of him, and not be able to look at me because I looked too much like him?  Do you know what it did to me watching my favorite grandma become a shell of herself because her little boy was dead.  Knowing that she didn’t feel like me, she didn’t think he didn’t love her enough, that instead she blamed herself, thinking she didn’t love him enough, didn’t give him enough, didn’t bail him out enough, didn’t go bankrupt enough trying to save him?  It made family functions intolerable.  It made his brother and sister feel less loved.  No matter what, no matter how alive they were my grandma still lost my dad and they would never be enough to make her whole again.  I learned how to put a wall up the very best from my grandma.  

I also have a brother and a sister.  Did you know that my dear blog readers?  It’s true.  They are eighteen and twenty one now.  They don’t know me.  Because another thing that comes with suicide is that stigma of bad genes.  They don’t know their dad killed himself.  They think he just died.  They don’t know it’s in their blood to be crazy. They don’t know any of the things I know.  But their mom does, and because she never wanted them to find out she took them away.

Do the math, I didn’t just lose one person that day, I lost 4, a father, a brother, a sister and a grandma.  The hurt it has caused me over the years knowing my step mom harbored such hate for my dad that it bounced off to me has sucked.  It sucked when I finally reached out to them sixteen years later and was refused.  It hurt all over again.  It makes you feel like you must really be a pretty bad person if you can’t even see your own brother and sister.

Suicide will probably never stop effecting me.  I will always have these irrational fears.  I’ve tried counseling so many times.  I’ve tried medication.  I’ve tried drugs.  I’ve tried alcohol, but none of it has ever covered up the fact that my dad didn’t love me enough to live.  I go out of my way to keep friends.  I go to far sometimes.  Even when they are visibly walking on me I still keep trying because I don’t want to lose them.  I have one very close friend in my life, who has been my friend since 3rd grade who has watched it happen.  Who has seen me get walked on and watched as I kept trying to please them, make them happy, do anything to keep them from leaving.  She is the only one whose ever been brave enough to tell me someone is treating me like shit.  While I almost NEVER listened to her I loved knowing that she cared enough to tell me, to pay attention, and to try and stop it.

I’ll never stop wondering what my life could have been.  Would I still have been diagnosed bi polar, manic depressive with border line personality disorder?  Would I have had postpartum depression as badly as I did after Codi?  Would I have dated less guys, studied harder, earned a degree, become a runner who took care of her body and went on to achieve amazing goals?  Because it’s hard, it’s hard to love yourself, to lose weight, to care about school, to do anything really if you don’t love yourself.  And it’s hard to love yourself when one of your very own flesh and blood parents couldn’t love you enough to stay alive.  It’s hard to try and keep all of this in daily so that I don’t turn into a raging lunatic on a daily basis.  It’s hard pretending I’m okay when I’m not. It’s hard writing about this and knowing that people in my real life will want to talk about it.

I DON’T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT.

It’s hard.  

I get angry now when people threaten suicide.  How dare they.  How dare they put that image into their childs head.  How dare they play games with something so serious.  How dare they re-open those fears and leave me sitting there a scared little girl again waiting for the next person to walk away.  HOW DARE THEY!

I get even more mad when someone succeeds.  WHY????  Were they so selfish that they didn’t think of what they were doing to those around them?  Did they truly think they were going to make their loved one’s lives better?  THEY DIDN’T.  THEY DON’T.  It’s selfish and it’s sickening and it ruins peoples lives.  Unlike the person who died we don’t get to just check out of life, we are left here standing in the dust confused, unhappy and hating ourselves.  Please, think next time you casually tell someone you want to kill yourself.  Think next time you assume you’re doing people a favor.  THINK before you ruin some ones life, because I’ll be honest, suicide ruined so many parts of my life that could have been amazing.

I thought for weeks about what to write in this entry.  I took notes.  I pre-wrote it in my head.  The thing that kept stopping me was knowing that my family would read it and want to talk about it and after eighteen years I’ve talked about it enough.  I’ve analyzed myself enough. I’ve broken myself down enough.  I’ve felt bad for who I was for long enough.  I finally decided to write about this though, for the people I haven’t talked this to. For readers who may be wondering why they hate hugs, or self destruct often, or push people away.  I’m taking great faith this time that my family will leave it alone.  That I won’t have to see that “look” on peoples faces.  That I won’t have to talk about what I wrote and dissect it and make myself more frustrated then I already am.  But I do offer this, for any readers out there who want to talk, who have questions for me, who need an ear I am here.  I would love to talk about it with you.  I would love to answer questions, help you, listen to you, anything.  I wrote this post today for my blog readers.  Not for the people in my every day life, but for the people who have stuck by this blog for almost six years and deserve to know why I sometimes don’t write, why I am sometimes an asshole and who deserve to know a little about who the author of this website really is.  

61 thoughts on “The one about suicide

  1. Words cannot describe the passion in which you write with…you are an amazing person with a family who loves you very much…I’m so glad you found Rob and that he is patient and can show you that you can be loved!! And know that I love you very much!!!

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  2. I understand how one event can impact the rest of your life especially when you are to young to comprehend how you should handle. When I was about 6-7 years old I went over to a friends house like I would every so often. My mom had told my friends uncle that I slept walk. When I went to sleep on the ground I was woken up with a feeling that I had never felt before. His hands were down my pants, I didnt know what to do so I pretend that I was still sleeping. From that day on I would not trust to stay at a friends house or anywhere that was not my family. Now I know it was not me that caused it but I regret telling someone I think that the impact it had on my life and the people around me.
    I did not have the same child hood as many other children. I was afraid of what other men could do to me. I was forced to grow up fast.
    I was afraid of sleeping in the dark without a nightlight until after I turned 18 years old. I do not like to be touched. Especially if someone wants to touch my back. I do not like to hug people that I do not completely trust. When I first had sex I felt dirty knowing that someone had touched me before I was ready. This has made it hard for me to have a relationship. I had issues with commiting to one person. Anytime I felt that they were getting to attached I would leave them.
    I find myself thinking everyday anything that could go wrong would. I think that the person I am with is going to leave me. When I am in the car I daydream about getting in crashes. I overeact to things that I shouldnt. I feel crazy, that might just run in my family. Stress makes me feel as if I am drowning. I feel about 20 years older then what I actually am. I feel as if my childhood was ripped away from me.
    I cant say that I completely understand what you went through but I definetly understand the feeling.

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  3. Anon: I don’t know who you are but I love you for sharing. I can’t even imagine what you went through and I send you a thousand non space invading virtual hugs. Thank you so much for your comment, for reading and for taking the time to write such a heartfelt story!
    Thank you thank you thank you

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  4. Shannon, thank you so much for sharing this. I am going to share this with our local suicide alliance group – think that they would love it. (hugs) sweetie, you’ve been through so much and you are amazing.

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  5. Heather: Thank you so much. I hope it will help them in some way. If you ever have questions or want to ask me anything else please do, I have so so so much more I can say on the subject and I have no problems talking about it to help others. Please, don’t hesitate to ask me anything else if it is going to help people.

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  6. I read and re-read. Then left it for 24 hours. My first instinct is to give you a big hug. But pretend I respectfully stepped back and you can just feel my love oozing towards you!
    You are an amazing person. You share so freely. I can not imagine what you went through and still go through regarding this. You are an extremely strong person. Rob is just as lucky to have you as you are to him (remember that).
    You are none of those things you say about yourself by the way. I don’t even know you in person but I can tell from the way you share and your genuine reason for sharing that you are none of those things.
    Your father was sick. I pray that you will realize it wasn’t because he didn’t love you enough. It was because he didn’t love himself enough. Love yourself, let yourself make mistakes – just learn from them, be yourself – and don’t let others tell you what you should be like. I pray you find peace with the situation and the outcome. What he did was wrong on so many levels. But you, you are right in all those ways he was wrong. You are you. Period. End of story. We (your fellow blog-followers) like you just the way you are.
    If you ever need a totally random, non-judgemental person to talk to please call me. I would consider it an honor!

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  7. Thank you for a great perspective on the incredible impact suicide has on a family. A family member of mine took his life when I was in my early 20’s. He was someone’s father and someone’s child. I had a newborn and a toddler. I kept wondering how on earth I could love them enough to make sure they knew that suicide could never ever ever be a fleeting thought, let alone an option. Those babies are now teenagers, as are the children this man left behind. We all wonder if his children should know the truth and when (if ever) is the right time to tell them.

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  8. Tina: I think when they are older, MUCH OLDER. On some level I wish I wouldn’t have known until I was in my 30’s and had my kids, because then it would be easier to just get mad at him and be over it. Sometimes I think it would be better to not have known ever, because what is the point? It’s never going to be a positive thing in my life, and I can’t imagine any age having it be a good thing at any age. How different would I be if never knew? It’s such a hard decision to make. Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting!
    Melissa: NO, THANK YOU!

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  9. I’ve never been through this personally, but I applaud you for being so brave in talking about your experience. It was probably really hard working through the thoughts and feelings behind it but you did it beautifully.
    I read another blog about a lady whose husband committed suicide about a year ago and she’s very honest and open about it. I don’t know if it would be hard to read some of the posts but in case it helps at all here’s the link: http://www.rrsahm.com/
    I’m so glad you found such an amazing husband and that you’ve come this far. You are amazing and as hard as it is, try not to let his decision impact your self worth. You’re definitely worth it, and worth loving.

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  10. I’ve had this post open in my browser for almost a month, waiting for a time when I felt like I could read it and give it the attention it deserved. I’m sorry it took so long.
    I can’t imagine how it was to go through this for you. When I was 18, a friend and ex-boyfriend of mine killed himself. I knew him for maybe 2 years and he and his death had a huge impact on my life. My son is partially named after him, and over 10 years later I think about him at least a couple of times a week. I can’t imagine someone closer to me dying this way. When I was a bit older, my Mom told me that at one point a few years earlier, she’d read one of my sister’s journals and she had been suicidal. I can’t even type that without crying.
    Thank you for sharing this with us, with the world. I wish that more people would talk about this stuff, the impact it has on people, on families. And that it goes on for years… forever, really. I’m sorry that this happened. I wish that you had only been surrounded by love instead of this kind of pain.

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  11. I just read what you wrote. I could not stop crying. I felt as if I was reading my life. My Dad killed himself when I was 19,it has destroyed my family,my life,my self esteem.I am 45 years old now.It seems like yesterday. It’s a horrible feeling. I have read many articles ,none have touched me like yours did. I would love to keep in touch and talk more. I need help so desperately.Its a lonely,dark world what we have been through.

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  12. I read this post after a breakdown. I felt like i was reading about my own life! My father killed himself when i was 7 years old(i’m 16 now ) and for the past 8-9 years i have felt all alone because the people that surround me can only understand that they should be nice to me because i lost him but suicide is still taboo for them and i am singled out , pitied and treated differently. He was a brilliant man to the outside world. An amazing industrialist. My sisters (step sisters) and i were brought up in the lap of luxury and still are. My mother tries to fill the void in me or get rid off of the sadness that i feel by buying me stuff, which i domt accept because it seems superficial to me . I am angry at him but i dont want to be. I totally understand the no touching thing because i feel the exactsame way. My boyfriends (2 that i have been with till now ) could never understand this and the relationships were strained because of that. Everytime someone tries to get close its as if the air has suddenly vanished and i am being strangled. I start to freak out. (my dad suffocated himself too ) . My mother thinks i am bipolar but won’t take me to a shrink.i have always thought that sincei am his daughter and i have the same brain and everything i will end up killing myself too and have subconsciously waited for that to happen for a long time. But after reading this, i think i can hope to find someone like you have and be happy. I don’t have to end up like my daddy.i could be like you. Thank you so kuch for deciding to write this post.

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  13. i had such a similar experience. dad killed himself when i was 9, people walked on eggshells around me which allowed me to develop this ridiculous sense of entitlement.
    have so much trouble with relationships and friendships, even with my own family. self-fulfilling prophecies of isolation and sadness at every corner….
    anyway, your story really rang a bell for me. my way of dealing at this point is trying to make life as easy as possible. i am almost 30 and still working on a bachelors after repeated leaves of absence because A. i legitimately can’t hang sometimes and B. i use my illnesses and experiences as an excuse to take more time than i need.
    i have no friends because i just end up fucking hurting them or myself or both… but i can feel myself slipping further from the social sphere… i am forgetting how to interact with people..
    what i am trying:
    1. do not invest in the identity of ‘crazy’ or let the package of stigmas and responses affect me. don’t tell people about it except people you are really close to, frame problems in terms of direct causes. dad died so long ago…
    2. distractions: be a listener, focus on work or kids…
    3. make life comfortable: eat well, get lots of rest, exercise, be healthy for myself.
    4. remember the benefits of giving other people space. they will bring new thoughts from their experiences to you, you will have time to do your own things, you can have more varied experiences with others.
    ok im rambling. your story resonated for me so stay strong, stay out of your head, keep an iron smile on your face for YOU

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  14. i think of writing a comment and then i get nervous and stop .. i want to commend you for the progress and strides you have made in your life, im so very glad that you have a significant other to help guide and support you through this roller coaster we call life.
    I cant imagine going through what you did at the age you did,but your experience gives me hope that one day i can make a better life for myself, for me I was 17 and at least i had the ability to comprehend what was happening, (i didnt do a very good job but still..) i didn’t blame myself but to this day i still have others doing that for me and eventually you start to believe it. i get the whole, it wasnt your fault you need to let it go..(easier said than done), i also have the irrational fears 3 years and i am yet to be able to touch a knife, ( i was a chef.. i had to change careers because the constant flash backs made it impossible for me to function). enough about that i just wanted to thank you for your post, needed some reassurance tonight and am glad i came across your post. x

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  15. Wow, I could have written much of what you wrote. My dad shot himself when I was 6 years old and I have obviously been hugely impacted. Some of your comments are things I have said many times. How could anyone love me if my own father didn’t love me enough to stay alive. I like to refer to it as living without the bubble. When something that tragic happens at such a young age you no longer live in the “bubble””. You know terrible things happen and live every moment waiting for them to happen. I am terrified of losing my children (and it didn’t help when they both had life threatening food allergies-both have outgrown them). I could go on and on but I just wanted to thank you for sharing your story! I didn’t realize until reading the comments that your name is Shannon too!”

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  16. I’m sitting here in an empty parking lot w my journal, this phone, & the sharpest & newest paring knife from our kitchen. I wrote the impact suicide would have on my family…my parents, sister, & husband…”they’d be sad but move on.”” As for my kids (ages 6&7)…ok

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  17. Their Mom: I am so glad you found this and read this. Speaking about this has been very hard because a lot of my family gets upset that I still bring him up. But I had to. I had to talk about this so anyone thinking about this would know that the kids are never okay with it. It has left me feeling worthless and like I wasn’t enough for him to live. It’s caused problems in my marriage because I constantly question if I’m good enough for my husband or I wait for the bottom to fall out. I never trust people and I have awful self esteem. I’ve allowed myself to be used and walked on because I didn’t feel like I was worth more then that. I hope you throw that knife away. I hope you live for no other reason then to teach your children that they were enough of a reason for you to live. And to make sure they know they are worth something. And teaching them that makes you worth something. Good luck. I have email attached to this blog if you ever want to talk.

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  18. I’m in my 40’s and I think of my brothers suicide daily and the son, my nephew that was left behind. It is a struggle everyday for me so I can’t imagine how Daniel really feels, as well as all that you have felt and gone through. I’m also doing research on a paper I’m writing for college and I chose the topic of the affects suicide has on a family member. I’ve made my nephew one of my top priorities in life. I love him so much and can’t imagine how much more in life he’ll be facing. Daniel was 12 when he lost his father to suicide. Sometimes I’m at a loss as what to say to him or how to help him, but I’m there for him whenever he needs me. He also joined a church shortly after his fathers death. They are his second family. His mother doesn’t really help him or guide him much in life.
    I go to church with him when I’m not working and we spend time together whenever possible. I do thank you for sharing your story and for listening to mine. Keep your head up high, anything is possible if you just believe. God Bless you.

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  19. I’m in my 40’s and I think of my brothers suicide daily and the son, my nephew that was left behind. It is a struggle everyday for me so I can’t imagine how Daniel really feels, as well as all that you have felt and gone through. I’m also doing research on a paper I’m writing for college and I chose the topic of the affects suicide has on a family member. I’ve made my nephew one of my top priorities in life. I love him so much and can’t imagine how much more in life he’ll be facing. Daniel was 12 when he lost his father to suicide. Sometimes I’m at a loss as what to say to him or how to help him, but I’m there for him whenever he needs me. He also joined a church shortly after his fathers death. They are his second family. His mother doesn’t really help him or guide him much in life.
    I go to church with him when I’m not working and we spend time together whenever possible. I do thank you for sharing your story and for listening to mine. Keep your head up high, anything is possible if you just believe. God Bless you.

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  20. Your blog about your experience was very helpful. My husband of 14 yrs suicide 14 years ago when our children were 4, 7, and 10. The 4 yr old is 18 now and is out of control. She moved out for her senior year because I couldn’t handle her stealing and marijuana smoking in my home (I have two little children from a second marriage). This child was my closest friend since her father died, but she turned on me as an adolescent and wanted space to be free before it was logical and safe to be so. She uses me and her sister and brother as much as she can and it hurts. She is beautiful and entitled. She doesn’t take no for an answer and she never takes responsibility for her hurtful actions. It has become almost ridiculous. My older daughter has similar patterns but manifest in a different way. They both seem to sabotage their relationship with me and others. I am unable to reach out effectively to them as they are not open to me.
    Your blog entry opened my eyes to their possible perspective. Thank you for this entry. I myself sabotage my relationships as well as I don’t really feel I am loveable. Thankfully I also have a husband who faithfully loves me regardless of how sad and hopeless I get. I thank God for him every day.
    I want to know if you think I can do something for my girls. They are 18 and 21 years old. I have tried counseling but they don’t seem very open. I think the 18 year old is bipolar with a personality disorder. The 21 yr old has ADD but could be bipolar as well.
    Thank you for listening. 🙂

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  21. First of all thank you for your post, as it gave me a big sense of recognition reading all this. It is basically the closest thing to my own life and thoughts, as anything else related to the topic I have ever read. However I am a guy and my father also committed suicide when I was 12 years old, I never knew him well as his mental illness started to unravel shortly after my birth. This meant I lived together with just my mom and had support from my grandparents from my mothers side (my father’s side was always very elitist, with big homes, flashy cars and degrees that could fill a football field). it meant that my fathers family did not acknowledge his illness to a very late date as it would have probably been bad for their reputation.
    Once I got older things got better and I encouraged my mother in finding a new man in her life, as a 5 year old I might add :), if something like the washer would break and our ground floor would flood with water, I would name all the men I knew in our lives starting with neighbors, family, friends and people she worked with, which would make her laugh. When I was 5 she finally met a man, a father of one of my middle school friends, who had just lost his wife to cancer few years back while having two kids, they married 5 years later.
    I would see my father, if the lawyers and my mother let me, as he was very ill. I once had to stop him from killing my mother when I was 4 years old, of course I don’t recall 90% of it and only remember running back and forth between them to create space between them while shouting stop. Don’t hate my father when you read this, as he had a psychosis and several disorders which led him to believe the world was against him. He really needed the professional kind of help while his family put way to much unhealthy pressure on him all the time. He never hurt me physically, never. I was always the one and only one that could bring him to something closest to what resembled himself, this quickly blew over in an enormous sense of shame as he would immediately leave and we wouldn’t hear anything of him for months. This did give my mother a lot of fear as her priority was keeping me and her safe, while this entire scenario was unpredictable to say the least. Which in turn meant we had to move a lot.
    Back to point (I could go on for a while), between 5 and 10 I would see my father regularly each few months and we would go out to an amusement park or a movie, basically we did something fun together, mostly under a mild form of supervision. Once my mother remarried these days with him basically seized to exist a year later. on my 11 birthday I remember he promised to show up but never did, idem on my 12th birthday and as things where going well with out new family I am embarrassed to say that he wasn’t on my mind too often as thinking about him only made me sad. One morning I was behind my computer when my mother told me she had to tell me something, I replied with: “He’s dead isn’t he?””. He had drunken himself to death and was found in his home.

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  22. My husband killed himself a few weeks ago. He left behind our 5 and 10 year old children. The physcologists suggest telling them everything, but my gut instincts say not to. It’s been interesting to hear how it was for you growing up with the knowledge. I’m so sorry, it must have been very traumatic. I find peace when I forgive my husband and I hope he can find some peace too.

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  23. Thank you for what you have written. I have read so many articles about suicide recently as I’m in a very bad state and fighting with myself over what to do. I have completely fucking ruined the life that my family and I enjoyed previously and I’m facing further worry about my poor judgement leading to more trouble and heartache for those I love. So many people in my life have turned their backs on me and I cannot see a way forward. The prospect of giving up on life has been very real and I have made plans but not yet acted on them. I have become numb to the routine psycho-babble advice about why to avoid suicide and had been convincing myself more and more that I should do it. However, your account of the awful consequences for a surviving daughter was pretty harrowing to read but exactly the slap in the face that I needed. My own daughters are of similar age to you when you lost your Dad and whilst I knew it would be hard on them, I hadn’t been able to envisage quite so much coming from it. Your story has just helped me and therefore them more than I can explain. I’m so sorry for even thinking of abandoning them that way.

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  24. Thank you for what you have written. I have read so many articles about suicide recently as I’m in a very bad state and fighting with myself over what to do. I have completely fucking ruined the life that my family and I enjoyed previously and I’m facing further worry about my poor judgement leading to more trouble and heartache for those I love. So many people in my life have turned their backs on me and I cannot see a way forward. The prospect of giving up on life has been very real and I have made plans but not yet acted on them. I have become numb to the routine psycho-babble advice about why to avoid suicide and had been convincing myself more and more that I should do it. However, your account of the awful consequences for a surviving daughter was pretty harrowing to read but exactly the slap in the face that I needed. My own daughters are of similar age to you when you lost your Dad and whilst I knew it would be hard on them, I hadn’t been able to envisage quite so much coming from it. Your story has just helped me and therefore them more than I can explain. I’m so sorry for even thinking of abandoning them that way.

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  25. As a child of a parent who committed suicide. What would of happened to you if you had stop speaking to your dad weeks before. I’m divorced and up until a month ago I had a good relationship with my daughter. That was until my ex thought it is ok for my 16ur old to be sleeping at her 19yr old boyfriends house. I disapprove so now she has stopped talking to me. I am 44 and have dealt with depression my whole life, I feel losing her is the thing that will push me over. I love her so much but I can’t live without her. Therapist family Medicine, nothing ever gets rid of these thoughts!

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  26. I came across your blog while I was searching for the affects a parents suicide has on a child…..because I am 44 years old and have suffered with depression most of my life and it is taking it’s toll on me. I love my 9 year old son more than ANYTHING, but the fucking pain & suffering that I have endured is out of control. I am definitely trying to get help (but am feeling hopeless) because I don’t want to fuck up my son’s life, but I also don’t know what’s worse……having a mother who is so emotionally damaged or no mom at all. Depression is debilitating!!! Obviously your blog affected me & I’m reaching out for help. I do admire you for being so strong and making it through the hard times

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  27. I know people’s parents kill themselves all the time but for years I’ve searched for someone to be feeling similar to the way I feel. Justification for my self destructive life or maybe just validation of my feelings. I’m married to my high school sweetheart but I’m steadily destroying that relationship. I can’t ever get myself to finish college, I’ll be on track for a successful semester but will find an excuse to fail or quit. My dad killed himself when I was 11. Right before be died I stumbled downstairs in the middle of the night and found him in his chair with a bottle of wine (nothing out of be ordinary) He told me how much he loved me no matter what happened. I woke up in the morning to my mom and her best friend (also my best friends mom) sobbing at the foot of my bed. In my head I already knew what they were going to say “your Oma (grandma) died last night”” but that wasn’t what they said at all. They told me my dad had died in the night “”well you know he had hepatitis”” they said. That’s all that was ever said to me directly. I always felt like he had killed himself my suspicions were confirmed while I was pilfering threw my moms safe and found his death certificate. The word was right there

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  28. I know people’s parents kill themselves all the time but for years I’ve searched for someone to be feeling similar to the way I feel. Justification for my self destructive life or maybe just validation of my feelings. I’m married to my high school sweetheart but I’m steadily destroying that relationship. I can’t ever get myself to finish college, I’ll be on track for a successful semester but will find an excuse to fail or quit. My dad killed himself when I was 11. Right before be died I stumbled downstairs in the middle of the night and found him in his chair with a bottle of wine (nothing out of be ordinary) He told me how much he loved me no matter what happened. I woke up in the morning to my mom and her best friend (also my best friends mom) sobbing at the foot of my bed. In my head I already knew what they were going to say “your Oma (grandma) died last night”” but that wasn’t what they said at all. They told me my dad had died in the night “”well you know he had hepatitis”” they said. That’s all that was ever said to me directly. I always felt like he had killed himself my suspicions were confirmed while I was pilfering threw my moms safe and found his death certificate. The word was right there

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  29. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your post! I qm SO SORRY for your loss, for what you have been through, & for what you continue to struggle with each & every day! I can see that you are a very strong & brave woman with a lot of courage, so thank you!!! I am sending you light & healing energy! I, too, lost my father to suicide at age 5…and what do you REALLY understand about death & suicide at that early age?! I don’t remember much about it, nor do I remember what my feelings were or if I acted out in any way, or if other’s treated me differently. I never really thought that it affected me that much because I never thought of myself as a victim for what happened, but it subconsciously affects me in every relationship I have ever been in with a man. I tend to pick the emotionally unavailable men that I subconsciously KNOW will leave me in order to prove myself right…that I am unlovable & men leave! I somehow feel that if I can “save”” just ONE of them from their self-sabotage & self-destructive unloving ways

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  30. I Googled “how suicide affects children”” because my son is nearly 4 and I’m depressed and suicidal. He is literally the only thing keeping me here but it’s been getting harder recently. Thank you so much for writing this. I love my son so much I could never ruin his entire life.x”

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  31. I just read this and am fighting back tears. I have a 5yr daughter and literally every day is a triumph. I have said those exact words. They, she would be better off without me. I love my daughter but I feel like she deserves so much more than I can give her. How can I love her if I can’t love myself. She is really the only thing that has kept me going this long but every day is a struggle. Thank you for being so open and honest. It has made me rethink at least for today what I should do. And all I can do is take it one day at a time. But thank you for saving me today.

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  32. I googled “How suicide of a parent effects a child?”” I cried the whole time I read your post. I had no idea it would effect my children this way. I have chronic pain and I feel like such a burden to my husband and especially my children. I thought their life would be so much easier if I was gone but after reading this I just couldn’t do that to them… EVER! I have had trust issues all my life as well due to my parents divorce. I broke up with every boyfriend and there were many before they could leave me. I wouldn’t want any of my children to experience any of this. I got lucky with a great husband who I have pushed and pushed but he isn’t going anywhere. He is so amazing and deserves so much better and shouldn’t have to live his life like this. You have know idea how this has saved me and I need to get help. I can’t get better on my own. Thank you

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  33. I would like to make comment from a slightly different angle. Just as many people say they understand your thoughts and feelings without knowing you, I believe I can understand your fathers without ever having known him. I have struggled with mental illness most of my life and the only reason I am still here is to be a part of my 4 daughters lives.
    I can assure you that your father didn’t kill himself because he didn’t love you enough. With depression comes a huge amount of self loathing and you genuinely believe many people’s lives would be better if you were not here. It is with immense love and concern for your children’s lives that you make the decision and it is not without much thought. Although my 7 year old has no idea what depression is, she senses my pain and wants to work hard and do everything she can to alleviate my pain. I am robing her of her childhood and already see elements of her personality forming that will develop into problems in her adult life, problems that are very similar to all those you described. Do I stick around and mentally destroy my children with my illness, or leave and hope someone can step in to help them pick up the pieces such as your husband has. i hate life so much that I have even come to hate the ideas of eating and sleeping. I would be an idiot to not see how that is affecting my children mentally and shaping their personalities. You say it is wrong to think you are doing them a favour but you do not see it from a parents point of view. I can see that if I continue to live, by the time my children are in their late teens they will despise and blame me for how my misery has affected them. I could not imagine anything worse than that. I would like to go knowing my girls love me and they know I love them. If it’s any consolation at all, I think your father probably felt the same way and thought he was doing the best for the most precious and important thing in his life. You say he didn’t love you enough to stay. You should try to see it from his point of view. That he loved you so much he was willing to sacrifice anything for you. Including his own life.

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  34. I just finished a novel where a man says to a woman, “You destroyed my life!”” He was referring to their failed relationship 25 years earlier. My next thought was that my father destroyed my life when he killed himself when I was 9

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  35. This will be short and sweet. It pisses me off when people call suicide selfish and have no damn clue what hell is. Utter hell. You hate waking up. Hate going to sleep. Hate eating, showering, moving, and literally everything. Crying all the time. Wondering why you are mean to your kids or spouse. Fearing your kids inherited your illness. Trying medicine after medicine until there’s nothing left. I can’t put into words the hell I’m in every damn day. Every hour. It’s not fucking selfish. It’s not because we don’t love our kids and family. It’s because we fucking do. We know we hurt our family every day, so our thought is the only difference is that instead of all of us hurting, at least we won’t hurt anymore. Our family hurts whether we are here or not so it seems reasonable to think they would want the pain, yelling, being an asshole and anger to stop. You can’t fathom the shit we go through daily. Afraid of hugs? Afraid of love? Afraid of losing people? Please. I’d trade with you in a second and you’d be begging me to trade back. You people have no damn clue what true, dark, deep depression is. No clue. If you could spend a minute in my head your whole attitude would change. Yea I have a wife and kids. I’ve tried killing myself before with a bottle of sleeping pills but I woke up for some reason. I don’t even know what to write anymore but damn people, this isn’t just being sad, it’s a fucking living nightmare of hell

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  36. And one more thing, that’s what letters are for. I’d at least leave letters to everyone explaining the issues and how I feel about them. They would know it wasn’t their fault, how sick I was, and what not. I’d at least do that much

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  37. This is for Mr. Hmmm: In the 14 lines of your first post you convinced me that you are sick, as you state. But after reading the second post and thinking about it for a while, I think you are only partially sick and totally STUPID! If you think some lame-ass letter to your children telling them why you off yourself will make any difference…that is proof you are stupid and haven’t paid any attention to the (above) posts by the survivors of suicide. Or maybe you are just so self-centered and so full of self pity that you don’t care what happens to your children. You think you are the only person in the world who is in pain, hates everything and doesn’t know what to do about it? Shit. Read the other posts, the ones from people with the courage to do something about their problems. And if you are waiting for someone to pat you on your head and say, “Oh

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  38. I wanted to personally reply to “hmmmm”” but he did not leave an email. I do respond to comments via email if they leave one. Hmmm made huge assumption when he said I couldn’t understand the pain. He must not have taken time to read more of my posts on the subject. If he had he would see that I’ve suffered from depression for as long as I can remember. He would know that I too have been in one of my bipolar lows after having kids and understood where my dad was when he really thought everyone would hurt less without him. I’ve hurt so bad I just wanted it to stop . I’ve felt like a massive burden to my kids and spouse. I’ve been in a place where I felt they could get the life insurance from my death

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  39. Thank you so much for posting this. I found it from a Google search about effects of parent suicide. I am 45 and have a wife of 20 years and twin 11 year old daughters. I fight and fight my depression. But it is relentless and brutal. I keep hanging on, but I feel emptier and emptier. Even when I didn’t think it was possible. I got diagnosed with Bipolar II just last year, which explained a lot. I think about suicide constantly. Even when I don’t want to. If feels like a living thing that grows stronger and won’t leave. In 2014, I messed up my life a bit. The Bipolar diagnosis explained it. But I lost my job and couldnt find another one, so I finally got one that I do not like and does not fit me and takes all my time. It is a 100% commission sales job. I have worked every day for eight months. Christmas, New Years, Easter, etc. I’m sure my job is a factor in my depression. I have written letters to everyone, I have arranged accounts, I carry around with me the means to kill myself. It feels like my brain wants me to die.

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  40. Thank you for sharing. I think of taking my life a lot. It doesn’t consume me, but it can sneak up and I can’t get it out of my head. I always think about my 11 yr old daughter and my sons who are 24 & 27. It makes more sense now by reading your blog that I would turn their world upside down. I needed more insight. Thank you. Thank you for posting. I truly appreciate it and I can make it through another day. Even if I have my happy person face on. 🙂
    Thanks you. It hurts, but I don’t want to hurt my kids 20 or 100 times more. Thank you.

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  41. I found your article at a time I really needed to be reminded of things. My dad committed suicide a week before my 21st bday. I didn’t realize until I read this all of the same things I went through as you only a little older. I have now had 2 failed marriages and a broken off engagement a month ago (I was supposed to be married this Sunday). My problems started 24 years ago when my daddy died, I refused to believe my daddy would do that to me so I blamed anyone else around me that loved me & tried to help me. I’ve been through alcoholism (as did my dad), prescription drug abuse, more financial trouble than a group of 1,000 people put together, and as a result prison for 10 months for embezzlement & forgery, while in prison I lost custody of my 2 kids. My father was facing prison when it was revealed he had embezzled over $100,000 from the company he worked for and the ultimate reason he shot himself was because he didn’t want to put his family through the embarrassment of being in prison. I used to think, I would have rather had daddy in prison for a few years then back at home with me instead of dead. Prior to my imprisonment, I got drunk & overdosed on 90mg of xanax and locked myself in the garage with the car running. My brother found me within just a few hours of death, I ended up in a carbon monoxide coma for 2 days then the psych hospital for another 5 days, definitely not the end I wanted. Prison was devastating for my 2 young kids and I kept thinking my death would have been better for them, I didn’t realize though until I was released that they did still need me but how resilient they were through it all. Last year 7 months after I was released I met the man of my dreams, I had never been swept off my feet before but here was a man that knew every last ugly detail of my past & still thought I walked on water, he quickly became the absolute love of my life that I never would have thought I would have had. Soon after, I moved in with him and soon after that his true ugly, jealous, controlling, and narcissistic side started coming out. After 6 mths of suffering from it he was the one that finally ended things with me & kicked me and my 2 young children out of his house with only given 1 week to find a place and he completely locked me out financially (my paycheck went into his acct & he wouldn’t give me anything when he broke it off with me). I made a desperate & stupid move while on Parole & got someone’s SSN & committed identity theft & forgery by trying to take out a loan in her name (she had been a customer at the automobile dealership I worked at). I ended up getting caught & arrested. Two months ago I had what I thought was the perfect life, today I have a different job making 1/2 of what I was making (obviously my work found out & I got fired), single,and in 2 weeks facing the likelihood of going back to prison again only this time for probably at least a couple of years. I convinced myself a couple of weeks ago that this time suicide DEFINITELY was the answer again, I wouldn’t put my kids through anymore disappointment. Only this time was how I was going to do it so it worked this time. I found a site online where convicted felons could purchase guns & I decided I was going to shoot myself in my office just like my daddy did, I was convinced that my kids were young enough to be resilient & they wouldn’t have to suffer anymore devastation caused by me once I was gone. I prayed & prayed for God to take my soul peacefully and to take care of my children. He did take care of my soul, He made me realize just a few days ago that I couldn’t do it, despite facing being gone for a long time my kids were still young enough to have ALOT of years ahead of them on still needing me. I saw the crisis nurse & my Psychiatrist a few days ago, they’ve helped by trying to normalize my psych meds (I’ve been mixing so much lately that it’s made me physically sick). My kids don’t know yet mom’s going away again, we want to get them through school (summer break starts in a week) but their dad & I are going to tell them next weekend. I absolutely dread it but at least I can say now, MOM WILL BE BACK & SHE WILL BE HEALTHY ONCE & FOR ALL once all this is over.
    The biggest thing that struck me about your article was that you were 12 when your dad died, my son is 13 so I compared what you went through to what he would have gone through, I never would have thought at only 12 years old you would have gone through the same things I did, even with me dealing with it when i was 21. I not only commend you for this article, I THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!!! This article put my perspective into place that I’ve made the right decision making the decision to live no matter what the next couple of years have in store for my children and I. I’ll admit, I’m COMPLETELY TERRIFIED for theirs and mines future but I believe in the power of prayer, & I believe God will take care of us. I encourage you to continue to share your story, there are so many young people that can learn from your experience. THANK YOU AGAIN FOR SHARING!!!!

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  42. Thanks for your blog. It makes sense. Why cause the pain to the children. I love them. I have had two young sibling deaths in my family, my sister and brother died too young, an alcoholic cheating father and I feel that I have grinned and beared it for so many years that now I want it out of my system. Suicide is not an option. But sometimes like last night I thought about it. I get angry with the kids. I am short tempered. I feel that I am hard and cruel. I hate myself for it. I apologize, I feel bad and then it starts all over again. I have this need to contol things, maybe because I couldn’t control the deaths and the difficult childhood I had?

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  43. Thanks for your blog. It makes sense. Why cause the pain to the children. I love them. I have had two young sibling deaths in my family, my sister and brother died too young, an alcoholic cheating father and I feel that I have grinned and beared it for so many years that now I want it out of my system. Suicide is not an option. But sometimes like last night I thought about it. I get angry with the kids. I am short tempered. I feel that I am hard and cruel. I hate myself for it. I apologize, I feel bad and then it starts all over again. I have this need to contol things, maybe because I couldn’t control the deaths and the difficult childhood I had?

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  44. Hello Misguided Mommy, and thank you for your blog and for talking about losing your father to suicide when you were twelve and coping with that ever since. I hope it is OK writing some of my thoughts to you now.
    My father killed himself when I was twelve, too. In 1969. I turn 59 next week, and when this September 10 comes around it will have been forty seven years. I’m still working on it, and I have a wonderful beautiful life that I love. I find joy all over the place. But I find suffering and struggling all over the place too, in others and in me. The strongest connections I find with other people are about the things they care about and suffer with, like that is the thing about each of us that is most real. A very good and helpful friend once told me “The sadness is the framework”, and it has been a kohn ever since, a philosophical riddle, finding the gifts in this awful life experience.
    I was very interested to read about your experience and your evolution. In some ways I had the same things happen to me and did the same things, but in some ways I had a very different time and was very different. It never occurred to me I could get away with extra stuff – I just withdrew and tried to protect myself, and shut down.
    It sounds like the fact that your father made an enormous important promise after an attempt, and then soon completely broke it, is kind of the theme of what happened to you — it sounds really twisted and poisonous in its effect if not its intent. I didn’t have that.
    I did have a sexually abusive relationship with my mother from the time I was about ten until I was fourteen, and felt somehow drafted into a conspiracy to take his place and drive him away. Of course I didn’t have the slightest bit of choice in this, and in my thoughts it’s not my fault, but thoughts only count for so much. One thing I’m squirrely about to this day is feeling like I got drawn into some kind of evil plot.
    It also sounds like your having children and trying to prevent your father’s suicide from spilling onto them is a huge tactical and day to day job for you. I never felt like I could be a parent, like I could not be loving to children, and avoided starting a family for a long time. Then I discovered I was actually sterile, and wondered if that meant I was supposed to not have children. I married somebody with two children, 11 and 15, which felt much safer as the nurturing closeness for a step parent for kids around their teens is a bit more distant and reserved. I actually feel like I might be able to handle the emotional part of having my own kids now, but jeez, my personal agenda is about retirement security and being good in the world these days, not replicating. About a dozen years ago time converted me from “somebody who will never have children” to “somebody who never had children”. That may not sound very different, but when I realized it, the difference was huge.
    I could go on… if you read this far, thank you kindly for humoring me. I am enjoying reaching out, now that there are support groups (I just joined one) and books (I just read one) and, wow, blogs (thank you). People who have had an experience like losing somebody close to suicide tend to be really likeable, really splendid to know. I’ve had an exquisite opening process in life, and grown close in recent years to the most insightful and powerful and warm people, who have had enormous though painful experiences like this. It gives people siddhis. I love that.
    As I say, thank you for humoring me.
    Warm regards,
    Christian

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  45. Wow. I’m 31 and my father committed suicide when I was 5. The words that you spoke are words that I have thought for SO many years and have felt so alone.. Until now. Thank you for sharing. I’m still in shock that I’m not alone and my thoughts aren’t ‘crazy’. I too have found the most wonderful and supportive husband, and I plan on having him read this. Thank you thank you and I pray that your thoughts become only positive and you are truly inspiring.

    Like

  46. Wow. I’m 31 and my father committed suicide when I was 5. The words that you spoke are words that I have thought for SO many years and have felt so alone.. Until now. Thank you for sharing. I’m still in shock that I’m not alone and my thoughts aren’t ‘crazy’. I too have found the most wonderful and supportive husband, and I plan on having him read this. Thank you thank you and I pray that your thoughts become only positive and you are truly inspiring.

    Like

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