Whitten and Me

by Gray Maher

Whitten Maher

What an easy, adorable baby.  A sensitive, angelic little boy. We tried so hard to give him siblings but they were not to be. We would do our best for our only child, and I would wait for grandchildren.

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I wish there were the right words for loss of a child

Years after the death of a child, things are not ‘better.’ What I mean is that ‘better’ is not the right word. The grief is in shorter bursts and it’s more tolerable.

For example, I’m able to move forward most days. I’m able to laugh. But I want a word read more

I owe it to Charles and his memory to be my best self

When I suffered a devastating loss, my perspective changed. The first time I laughed, a part of me felt guilty and I had to fight to remind myself that Charles would want me to have fun. And I know he would want me to follow my heart and my passion.

Instead of feeling guilty for my about face, read more

Defining my boundaries

It’s no surprise that I get messages here and on social media from people struggling with thoughts of suicide. And from parents suffering from a loss or with the active addiction or mental illness of a loved one.

So where do I draw the line? Draw my boundaries?

The truth is, I can only do read more

Finding the light in the darkness of loss

When tragedy happened, it changed me. I feel love deeper and more passionately. I feel more empowered than I have ever felt before.

None of this would have happened had I not lost my son, Charles. I would not have scripted it this way. Who would?

Little things don’t bother me as much. I’m read more

The in-between world

The day Charles died,  I felt him at my left shoulder as I looked out onto the deck. I felt shudders through my body that I have never felt before.

This was back at our house on that Friday, just hours before I would find out about his suicide. I didn’t know he was dead yet. Still on the read more

How could I not know?

My son suffered from depression and addiction. Suicide never crossed my mind. How could I not know?

I know some people wonder that about kids who kill themselves. Kids who do drugs. Kids who stockpile weapons and shoot up schools. Kids who end up pregnant as teens. How is it we don’t know? read more

Someone we care about relapsed

After about 16 months of sobriety, a good friend relapsed. I was worried when I had not heard from him. But then with some investigation, we discovered what we hoped we wouldn’t. Relapse. It happens as part of this disease.

Since his phone is broken, we can’t reach out that way. I read more