This is what I live for. It doesn’t get better than this


It’s letters like these that make my life worth living since Charles’ suicide. Warning. It will make you cry. A good cry. It is so thoughtful and well written. If the author is out there, thank you. This truly defines my purpose. I have removed identifying information to protect the sender’s identity. 

Mrs. Rogers,

I have tried writing to you many times, but have felt like it may be inappropriate for me to reach out to you because I had so little interaction with Charles, but I’ve been keeping up with your blog and after reading about how Charles was always willing to reach out, it reminded me of the very first time that I actually met him, and I wanted to share that story with you.

Charles was one of those people with whom I had many mutual friends, but I never really had the chance to hang out with him, and I think that was in part because he and my younger sister were in the same grade, and she’s far more outgoing than I ever will be. I’d always hear about a great freestyle he had done, or whatever hilarious antic he had been up to. He was someone who was wildly loved by everyone that he knew, and the first time I ever talked to him I knew why.

I’ve been struggling with depression for most of my life, which is a weird thing to say as a 22 year old, but it’s the truth. On one particularly bad day for me at school, (I’m talking “could hardly get out of bed because I didn’t think my body could function” kind of bad) I was waiting in the hall with some friends (a few of whom knew Charles better than I did) for some reason and it was almost like Charles just knew that I was hurting.

He approached me and immediately started rapping. I was completely thrown off, because I had never spoken to him before, but it was so funny that I couldn’t help but burst out laughing, and soon my friends and I were all laughing.

Once I started laughing he told me that pretty girls shouldn’t look so sad, and offered me a hug before going on his way.

I have only ever experienced such kindness a few times in my life, and that moment has stuck with me.

I’m sorry if this message was any kind of bothersome or inappropriate, I just really wanted to let you know that Charles helped me when I wasn’t feeling the best, and that even with the smallest interactions I had with him, he was kind and good.

I am truly sorry that our world has lost such a beautiful soul.

You are such an amazing woman and role model to continue on, fight for those of us who suffer from mental illnesses, and to have nothing but endless love for your son and have no shame sharing his story, and your story for the world. Thank you for taking the time to read this.*

*And thank you for sharing this story with me. I will keep it in my heart for the rest of my life.

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my younger son, Charles to substance use disorder and suicide on June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, coping strategies/resilience, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Professional Speaker Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

9 thoughts on “This is what I live for. It doesn’t get better than this”

  1. What a blessing he was! And what a blessing your ministry is to so many, helping them through their struggles as your heart heals. 💗

  2. Dear Anne,
    There are probably many people like this author whom Charles helped in his lifetime. The letter and the interaction between them reminded me of the many scenarios written about Robin Williams who was known for helping so many others. Charles’ life, I am sure was a blessing to many.

  3. Wow! Anne Moss, in your sadness there are letters like these that surely make you smile. What a wonderful young man he was, reaching out to others like this. I guess, through you, he still is!❤️

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