Anger is typical in early grief. It’s also typical when you have a loved one struggling with mental illness or addiction.
Around 2012, I was angry that Charles wouldn’t stop misusing drugs and alcohol. Then I was angry at the mental health system, God, and people who wouldn’t let me talk about him then. But once he died, I took my anger to a whole new level.
I wasn’t mad at just the system or God or some psychiatrist. Not at Charles or anyone in my family. For the record, it’s not unusual for family members to be angry at the loved one who killed himself. My older son was angry at Charles, but I wasn’t.
I was far too busy being mad at the world which took considerable emotional capital. It had to be the world because no single person was worthy of all the mad I had stored up.
A meltdown of unrelenting sadness and helplessness followed bursts of anger that had nowhere to land.
I couldn’t change the world, could I? But then that’s exactly what I tried to do. Fortunately, I am not doing it alone.