10 new traits I’ve adopted since my son’s suicide

There is nothing like the suicide of your child to inspire you to look at life differently than before. Life is now defined by “before Charles died” and “after Charles died.” Recently I’ve noticed myself adopting new behaviors. Below are the ones that stand out.

life after suicide

1. I tell my friends I love them

And I tell kids that were friends of Charles’ that I love them. I’ve always said this to my husband, family and children but expressing that to my friends is new. I want them to know.

2. I reach out to others more

It’s like I’ve become … Read more...

To those still struggling with a child’s mental illness

This is probably a familiar scenario. You are with a group of friends who know you’ve been struggling with a child’s mental illness or drug abuse–and absolutely no one asks about your child.

You’ve been through hell and back. You are emotionally spent and wrung out trying to maintain some level of functioning.

You hope someone will ask. But they don’t

asking-for-help-is-the-human-thing-to-do

It hurts. It hurts so much, you want to cry. You want to break down. You feel so isolated and alone like no one in the world cares.

Then you feel very very small all of a sudden. It’s almost … Read more...

9 Things I no longer tolerate since my son’s suicide

Ahhhh. It feels so good to let go of that baggage, simplify my life and bond with those who are genuine. While some of these have always grated on my nerves, now I cannot bear to be around it. Here goes, stuff I can no longer tolerate.there-are-three-things-i-cant-stand-1-liars-2-spiders-3-poorly-blended-eyeshadow-a41c5

  1. I can’t tolerate judgmental people – If you have not walked in someone else’s shoes, you have no right to judge. I can be polite but those who are critical of others due to lack of experience or just plain “judgy” types have no room in my life.

2. People who veil prejudices Read more...

4 grief phrases that make your journey more painful

grief

These might also apply to a death of a loved one that is not a suicide.

However, my grief experience is with the suicide of my son, Charles so I wrote from that point of view.

quote-leftI will never get over it

A suicide, or any untimely death, is not something you “get over.” It’s a journey that changes over time. You’ll always miss your loved one but you learn to carry them with you. Saying something as dour as “I’ll never get over it” merely brings you down emotionally. It shatters your hope of having a life and finding joy after the untimely … Read more...

We need to make suicide a household word

You’re probably thinking, “Why would I want to make a dour, gloomy, depressing subject like suicide a household word?”

Talking about suicide does not give someone the idea.conversation-about-suicide

The idea is already in their heads.

By repeating it, taking it out of the dark and putting it in the spotlight, we give people permission to reach out, we remove the secrecy and stigma and make the idea look like a less logical solution.

Just as important as talking about it, is the listening part

Listening is a skill we don’t do enough of. We tend to lecture our teens for … Read more...

Not exactly a suicide note

escape-cloudsHere’s how I understand the why of his suicide. His brain telling him he wanted to go, had to go. It would be better somewhere else. It was too painful here.

It is through these songs, as painful as they are to read, that I understand his depression. I wish he would’ve given life here another shot.

Run Free

Problems just pilin’ all around me
Wish I could just wilin’ in Hawaiian islands
Taking shots of crown
Let the alcohol drown
Take a look around
All this bullshit surround got me down
Wish I could just run free fun free, … Read more...

Looking at the other side of addiction

demons-addiction

I sit in this warm room surrounded by the bravest, most passionate people I have ever seen. I am now a familiar face and certain gentlemen greet me and ask me questions which I welcome.

Just a short time ago the man speaking had been sleeping under a bridge. Hard to imagine. He is articulate and emotional. This guy could be a motivational speaker.

He’s about 45 and moved to tears he’s so thankful to be alive.

He expresses how grateful he is to the other brothers in the room, fellow addicts, for taking him in once he made that … Read more...

A Rap Song from Charles about Snack Time. #humor

Charles loved sweets. Loved snacks. Loved little convenience stores. He would stand at that aisle and take forever to make a choice.

His earliest addiction was sugar. I can remember finding a bunch of packages of candy under his bed when he was around 8-10 years old and then sitting on the bed crying. I knew it had to be a precursor to addiction. Then I thought I could do something about it which I couldn’t.

Although he was the funniest human being I ever met, he doesn’t have many funny or lively songs.

The Rap Diary after all, was … Read more...

Charles’ Diagnosis from Wilderness

Document attachments are at the very bottom

05-21-12 CR
By this time, Charles had softened a bit. He was showing us the picture we sent of his dog Andy. Still our dog.

Many of you are currently dealing with a child (however old) with an mental illness. It was difficult for some reason to get a diagnosis in writing.

Time and again someone would start to treat him without a true assessment. Wilderness, 2nd Nature in Clayton, Georgia gave us that.

During his stay there, we had weekly one hour meetings by phone with his counselor. We also received letters from Charles … Read more...