I thought ‘I don’t want to do this’

I thought this when my son started misusing substances and when I found out he was addicted to heroin. I thought this before I went to bed after news of my son’s suicide. And there were other times in between where I just didn’t want to be the one who had to make a difficult decision and wished a fairy Godmother would sprinkle pixie dust and make it all better.

But the night he died, I so wanted to get out of having to grieve the loss of my child. Wasn’t there a detour I could take? And escape … Read more...

Coping Strategies for Grief and Loss of a Child

This is the half-hour workshop for Bereaved Parents USA. I usually do this live in about 1-1.5 hours and it’s more interactive but this had to be recorded. I will be experimenting with zoom rooms for a virtual general grief workshop in December. I adjust this presentation based on the audience. So if the audience is suicide loss survivors, then I adjust based on that. If the audience has more long-term survivors, I add points for that group.

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Anne Moss Rogers: Emotionally Naked; A Discussion About Loss By Suicide

I was honored to be on Dr. Gloria Horsley, Ph.D., M.S. C.N.S. and Executive Director, and her daughter Dr. Heidi Horsley, PsyD, LMSW, MS host the show, Open to Hope, .

The Open to Hope Mission:
Helping people find hope after loss.

Their Vision:
To provide an online forum to support people who have experienced loss: to help them cope with their pain, heal their grief, and invest in their future.

OpentoHope.com is an online website where people can share inspirational stories of loss and love. We encourage our visitors to read, listen, and share their stories of hope … Read more...

Spotty posting the next two months

You all know I’m writing a book. And if you don’t, you do now. It’s a book for the education market about preventing student suicide. The publisher’s deadline is in a little over two months. So unless I get more of your stories, I might miss some days posting.

You guys have introduced me to some awesome people to interview for this book. Thank you for that. I’ll be in my bunker the next few weeks not hiding from COVID but racing to meet this deadline.

Since this is the end of suicide prevention month, I thought I’d share … Read more...

Don’t stick a smiley face on my whine

COVID-19 sucks. Yeah, sure good stuff will come out of it, or has come out of it. Bad stuff, too not to mention a lot of death and people without jobs.

I don’t complain often. Not much at all really. But on a few occasions, someone has stuck a smiley face on my whine and pointed out that “everyone is in the same boat,” or “everyone feels the same way.”

Well, that doesn’t mean I don’t want a minute to moan for a couple of minutes and express what I’ve lost in this process. It might not be as bad … Read more...

Hanging on for dear life

After my son’s suicide, it was all I could do to exist. Blistering pain, the shock of loss, and fear of the process on which I was to embark left me clinging to the sides of a whirlpool of grief that threatened to suck me in. There were times it was all I could do to hold on.

Finding hope in those early days was a bleak expedition. But I never lost it. If the day started with sunshine, I found it there. If it was a cloudy day, I found it in a flower. There was always a ray … Read more...

7 steps to divorcing guilt

When I refer to guilt, I’m talking about instances where you think it’s all your fault.

In my case, I struggled with guilt and regret after my son’s suicide. All the regrets and coulda woulda shouldas played in my head on repeat for months and even years. Maybe you have guilt from substance use disorder or a suicide attempt.

You can’t hold yourself hostage for past mistakes you probably had little control over or ones influenced by trauma, crisis, or mental illness forever. Carrying that weight won’t benefit you, your loved ones. At some point to move forward and live … Read more...

Free eBook: The Emotionally Naked Bereavement Provider

Don’t know exactly what to say to someone who is struggling with a loss by suicide? What does it feel like to the bereaved? How can you help?

Whether you are a bereavement counselor, a bereavement group facilitator, an LCSW, or a friend, this guide offers you answers to common questions and ways to help those struggling with this brand of loss.

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Was that scent a sign?

signs from the deceased

There are a lot of people who would think I was crazy to look for signs from my son who killed himself. I don’t care. While we all have beliefs about what it’s like after we die, no one really knows even though they think they do. So I’m going to go all kumbaya on you all.

Last week, I woke up from a Charles dream, the details of which faded like an old photo as soon as I was fully conscious. I had not had a dream about him in a long time and I crave them because that’s … Read more...

What does it mean to move forward after loss?

While my loss was the death of my son by suicide, yours could be the loss of a loved one to mental illness or addiction. It could be loss of a marriage or a even a job.

After my son Charles died I would hear people talk about moving forward. Early in the grief process, I couldn’t fathom what that meant or what it would look like. Despite my tragedy, the world lunged forward with annoying consistency and continued to spin on its axis while I struggled with the steps on how to take a shower and get dressed.

At … Read more...