I guess that the 9 years since my Breck died at 23 make me a senior here, and I tell you unhesitatingly that Yes, it does get easier. There was no pain like when a part of me was torn away, like a cherished thing that flies out a car window without warning.

But it does get easier.

Like any other wound, we will be scarred forever. But the rawness of the wound will lessen and it will not always fill our every moment and be the center of our thoughts.

All the new behaviors that we think are abnormal are normal. These are well-known symptoms of grief that we see each other exhibit. What we are experiencing is totally within the range of Normal in our new reality of life as a parent who has lost a child to suicide. They are issues that each of us must deal with. The postings that are shared in this group emphasize that it is "each of us," not some of us, who go through these stages.

Allison, I am glad you have found this group. I hope we can provide some comfort and strength to you. For me, one-on-one counseling and the company of other suicide survivors has been crucial to my getting on.

I am glad you wrote at such length, and you sure wrote about some very familiar territory.

I tend toward overly lengthy responses, so the rest will be just an outline. I or any among us could write an essay on any each of these topics and issues, but I will be brief this morning.

The time we spend in each station is uniquely our own. It is a journey of growth.

We will never stop loving our child, and we never stop being a parent. Fathers Day will always recognize my being Breck's dad. Mothers Daywill always be for you, and we will each have our own personal "Remembrance Day" every day for a very long time.

Talking helps. Tell your story. Other survivors of suicide want you to share because we know that this is how we make it.

We're on an emotional rollercoaster with an endlessly new layout.

We did not fail as parents. Our children acted -- more likely impulsively the younger they were -- to end their pain. We would have taken on some of their pain if we could have, but we couldn't. Now, later, we have.

The severe stress of mental illness can be fatal.

We have experienced the worst trauma that a parent can.

It does get easier.

"Healing" is incomplete, "moving on" takes on a new meaning, and the concept of "closure" exists only in media stories.

In response to "What can I do?": Take care of yourself first. Later, the opportunity to help others may present itself -- take it when you can. Much later, some put their knowledge and experience to work for suicide intervention and prevention. Each of us becomes a potential community resource in a desperately important field.

And stay with us as long as you can. We are parents who sustain and encourage each other with love and compassion.

Michael, father of Breck (1971-1994) - Griefparents-Suicide




Linda, No I don't think it will ever go away. Not only can we not go back to the time when we had our partners, we can't even go back to being the people we were. Ken and I used to go out a lot to hear local musicians and just to socialize because Ken was a big music lover and a people person. For awhile, I told people that when I got myself more together, I would come back out to see them. Now I realize that this isn't going to happen because I am no longer that person. Our edges are blurry right now Linda. We have to redefine ourselves in this new reality.

Love, Deb - Grief-Widowed Email




time ebbs, time flows, time doesn't move at all...




Death ends a life....not a relationship.

Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom




Life after loss is.....a new normal.

Ted Bowman




If tears could build a stairway, and memories a lane, I'd walk right up to heaven and....bring you home again.




Fighting the entropy of life can make peace feel elusive, but it is always somewhere inside of us, waiting for our attention.  Even when we can't find the moments, we can believe in its ongoing presence.

Cendra Lynn




"It has been said, 'time heals all wounds.' I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, (protecting its sanity), covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But, it is never gone."

Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy




My Dad's Words of Help from Daniel Lins




The best tribute you can make to a loved one is the life you live after the death.





A cut finger
is numb before it bleeds,
it bleeds before it hurts,
it hurts until it begins to heal,
it forms a scab and itches
until finally, the scab is gone
and a small scar is left
where once there was a wound.

Grief is the deepest wound
you ever had.
Like a cut finger,
it goes through stages,
and leaves a scar.

Source unknown

Submitted by: Alicia Wells, a young daughter trying to deal with mom's death.




Have courage for the great sorrows in life, and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.

Victor Hugo




When we rely on other people for what we need to know, we are vulnerable to their mistakes. What others give us may be sincere and it may be genuine, but all information is a matter of how we read it. What one person says with one meaning may reach the ear of another with a different understanding. Wisdom comes from the same source regardless of where we hear it,but it is better to take the words of wisdom and work them through our own minds for direction and understanding. If we tune our ears to answers within ourselves, we will find our way.....

from A Cherokee Feast Of Days




Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don't search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke - Letters to a Young Poet




There is a way in which I have come to see evil. A person relinquishes parts of himself, retains one fragment of his total humanity. The cleverest can represent that fragment as the whole person. The people around him don't realize he is not accountable in the same way others are, that he doesn't experience himself in the same way. There is an emptiness that can give place to anything, that permits behavior unacceptable and unthinkable to others.

Mia Farrow




My colleague's daughter, in the 3rd grade, lost her teacher to a fast cancer. The woman began the year in September, left in December, and died this month. The daughter wrote a little about it, including "I wish I could recycle time."




"Face the fact that you must grow old until you die. Develop a sense of the benign absurdity of life-yours and those around you-and thus learn to transcend the world of experience. If we can abandon our missionary zeal, we have less chance of being eaten by cannibals."

Carl Whittaker




"When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving much advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief or bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares."

Henri Nouwen from Out of Solitude




This quote I came across in a book called Fireflies. It is written by the same guy who wrote the books the three Rambo movies were based on. After they were written he watched his 15 year old son die of cancer. He wrote of this experience and his son in the book Fireflies. The quote on the inside cover says it all for me after watching my 5 year old son get hit and killed by a car.

Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart, and bids it break.

Macbeth, Shakespeare
Jack Standeven




"When you come to the edge of all that you have known, there will be two possibilities awaiting you: There will be something solid to stand on or you will be taught how to fly."

A Turtle Creek Chorale member. (After goodbye: an AIDS story, a PBS video broadcast in 1995 and 1996 on WTVS-TV, Detroit, Channel 56.)



To submit short quotations or ideas for this section, send an email to GriefNet.

Rivendell Resources grants anyone the right to reprint this information without request for compensation so long as the copy is not used for profit and so long as this paragraph is reprinted in its entirety with any copied portion. For further information contact: GriefNet

Grace happens.



GriefNet Library Page | GriefNet Home Page