Judge less

As a result of what you’ve gone through, you are a better human being and/or a better parent. You are more humble, more compassionate, less judgmental and more apt to be selfless givers.

We are proud of our journey and what we have gone through and overcome. It has changed us forever. We are not ashamed of our loved ones who suffer from an addiction or mental illness or are afraid of what people will think of us because they do or did.

Acceptance. That’s such a good place to be even though we’d never choose how we got there. You often wonder why others sweat the small stuff.

As counterintuitive as it might sound, having gone through what I did with Charles as he struggled made me a better parent and a less judgmental person.

His suicide was gut-wrenching, devastating, and life-changing, but the groundwork from the days when he struggled helped me build resilience and has sustained me through the loss.

Published by

AnneMoss Rogers

AnneMoss Rogers is a mental health and suicide education expert, mental health speaker, suicide prevention trainer and consultant. She is author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW. She raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost her younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. She is a motivational speaker who empowers by educating and provides life saving strategies and emotionally healthy coping skills. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now that's the legacy she carries forward in her son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website.

12 thoughts on “Judge less”

  1. Love your articles. thank you.
    I still feel the judgements and even from me. I constantly think of that morning. I keep saying ” I shouldn’t have stay with him,specially cause I could see his sadness and I choose to ignore it. or was afraid that I didn’t know how to help him…
    your aftucles givw mw so.e ki d of comfort.
    Hope one day I can find peace.
    Im so glad you have found peace and a way to advocate and help us in this valley.
    Sending a hug. 😘

  2. Your incredible loss may have made you a better parent; it also made you an empassioned advocate and friend to those who need it most. No judgment, only the deepest respect and love… ❤️

    1. Thank you Amy. I think I will always have thoughts of failure as it relates to charles and parenting. Hind sight is 20/20. But it’s not all the time any more and I have strategies to kick start myself out of that destructive thought pattern. Nothing to be gained by it.

  3. I read your post about Charles and my heart cries for you as a mother. To lose a child for any reason at all is so hard to fathom. To lose a child to suicide makes you feel like you’ve totally failed to protect your child and keep him safe, the most basic requirement of a parent. And that judgement you feel as a parent by everyone, real and perceived, steals your self worth and your confidence that you can do anything right.

    I got a phone call, April 20, 2017 930am. It was my daughters school where she was a freshman. They told me not to panic but I needed to get to the school right away. I asked what was wrong. They said my daughter may have taken some medication and needed to go to the hospital. I cut the principal short and said “no no, my daughter has been trying to get attention from her friends lately she probably just told someone that so that…” and this time he cut me off and said “ma’am I don’t want to alarm you but we need you here now please leave work and get her as soon as possible”. I remember that dry feeling in my mouth you describe. I recall running the myriad of scenarios in my head while I drove the 2 miles. I remember vascillating between thinking “oh this kid, why does she look for attention” and “my god, what if she’s…..” and the drive feeling like it took hours.

    My daughter was nearly unconscious. Hardly breathing. She had taken 8 Percocet to end her life. She thought they would take a few hours to kick in so she took them at schooo and figured she would hide in the bathroom after school so I wouldn’t find her at home lifeless. I stood over her in the hospital for 12 hours watching her heart monitor drop. Her breathing rate stop. Nurses would come in and stimulate her to breathe and give her medication to increase her heart rate. Needless to say, my littlest one escaped death by moments. But I wasn’t left untouched.

    To this day I can’t catch my breath. I live in the “what if”. Anytime my phone rings and it is the school phone number I lose years off my life with panic and fear of what is on the other end. And the question from outsiders of “what happened to her” always seems to come with judgment. Maybe it’s my own insecurity and feeling like I failed. I can’t help but think anyone and everyone looks at me and says “she must have ignored all the signs” or “god how bad is that home-life for a kid to not want to live with her”. I can’t help wondering why I was given the beautiful gift of this child when clearly I am not capable of protecting her and keeping her safe. And I’m sure EVERYONE believes that statement is true.

    There is no judging a parent who loses a child to suicide. No parent ignores warning signs. Every parent talks themself into assuming it’s a phase, it’s just something they are going through, it’s something that will be better handled tomorrow. Every parent would give anything to go back to that day and do everything different. And no parent deserves to be judged for a choice they never would have made for their child if they had the chance.

    I hope you’ve found peace in your heart for what happened and know that you did all you could to help your son and his choice was not your fault. Anyone who differently deserves no attention.

  4. How often I’ve regretted judgments I’ve made in the past. We are all struggling with something and need support, not judgment. Thank you for this important reminder.

      1. I do too. Mother’s and women should stick together and know when to ask for help. Do not fear judgement, seek your final judgement and how you will explain not reaching out to your girlfriend for help? What was there to lose? These days, it takes a village.

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