When the Ones We Love Leave By Suicide
*Just a warning, this may be an article that may trigger you and stir deep emotions within.
*This post is dedicated to those of you who lost a loved one in this way, and may you find a little healing in it. It is long, but I hope you take the time to read it.
This post is deeply personal for me on so many levels, and hard to write.
I was a child, maybe 10 years old, when I remember the feeling of wanting to disappear because all I felt was pain, and I had a shoelace tied around my neck and I kept pulling it tighter and tighter, waiting to find myself somewhere else. I also remember the gentle hands I felt who touched me, lovingly taking control of my hands to untie it. God, I was just a little girl, how is it a child can feel so much pain? It took me a hell of a long time to understand how I was wired.
Most of my loved ones do not know that this feeling of “not wanting to be here” followed me most of my life until I stepped into the role I am in now. Even then, there were moments I’d look up at the sky and have a flood of emotion run through me, and the thought “God, you can take me now if you want” would quickly run through my mind, then vanish just as quickly. I just wanted to escape the pain of feeling so much.
I also went through the experience of losing someone by suicide for the first time when I was 16. I will spare you the details of how much that fucked me up and the black hole my life became because I had no clue how to process 2 deaths in less than 2 years. The 2 deaths that were close together were siblings. Now imagine feeling all of your own emotions about the loss, the emotions of all your friends and all those who loved them, even if you didn’t know them. Imagine feeling the emotions of the cops and first responders that came and had to deal with that scene. Imagine being able to see what they saw. Imagine what that felt like. I felt it all. It’s enough to drive someone to drink… which I did for many years. And frankly, it made me imagine my own death sometimes.
Ever since then I have been hypersensitive to the pain of others and feared them hurting themselves. Even now, I still feel that fear.
A few months ago I found myself in this position once again after learning my friend passed when my husband found his obit in the paper. It didn’t say how he died. We didn’t run in the same circles, so there was really no one who would have notified me. I asked one of my besties what happened becasue something felt wonky. The words she spoke knocked me on my ass… “He took his own life” I hear her say… and my heart sank, and my head fell into my hands as I sobbed. Then the guilt set in within seconds.
You ask yourself “Why didn’t I see it”? “Why didn’t I do more”. “Maybe if I did this or that, he’d still be here”. Those questions still torment me, even though I know the truth of the situation. I did see it, tried to stick myself in there but got pushed out. But knowing this doesn't stop those tormenting questions.
I still remember the time I confronted him in my driveway one morning and asked him if he was ok… his eyes no longer held the light I once knew. He didn’t smile at me like he used to. With a straight face he says “I’m fine”… no blinking, no smile, no nothing, as he walked away from me. I thought maybe he was just crabby, but I saw all the beer cans in the garbage can, so I wasn’t stupid. But I also know you cannot force anyone to see anything or to talk to you. It doesn’t work. And let me tell you how many times someone denies they are hurting. Very rarely does someone who is thinking this way ever let you know they are contemplating this. It is a rare occasion that someone contemplating ending their own life will come right out and tell you. Think about it... how do you say that or bring it up? And remember, their mind doesn't process or think they way it should when you are in that deep.
Yet, here I was, wondering if I should have done something different or pushed harder. But I knew him and pushing would not have worked anyway.
Everywhere I looked, there he was.
I pull into the Target parking lot, I see him sitting there.
I go to my office building and I can see him outside working on the building next door.
I pull into my driveway I see him and al the work he did on my home. And when I go inside, I see all the work he did, I remember the tile work he and I did together and remember how much he loved to teach me. I remember every office he built out for me. He seemed to be everywhere I went. And that adds more to that struggle of loss for a while.
When someone leaves this way, those left behind are shocked. If you have a shred if empathy, you know that for someone to leave this way means they were hurting really fucking bad. And to know your loved one felt that way adds more to the pain you feel. I think losses like this are some of the hardest to deal with, as any unexpected loss is.
What you may not realize is that I put my energy updates out there partially because of this scenario, in the hopes that if you are hurting, maybe it will help you understand it isn’t you, and there is more going on. There is nothing wrong with you. And that maybe, just maybe, if you understand this, it will give you a shred of hope to stay here. These energies can toss us headlong into some deep shit, and if we are clueless as to what is going on, we have less power to cope with it.
There are many humans who feel suicide is selfish. I strongly disagree. Suicide is an act of complete desperation. A desperation to be free of the pain that haunts you when nothing else worked. It is simply wanting the pain to stop. They are so desperate, their mind's no longer under their control, they can't even possibly consider the devastation they would leave in the wake of their action. They aren't thinking about you in that moment. All they want to is escape the torment their heads and harts are causing them. Yes, we are left behind to deal with that loss, and because of that it can feel like they are selfish for doing it. But please, stop for a moment to realize that someone doing this is hurting tremendously.
Many religions have said it is a sin and you will go to hell if you leave this way. This is complete and utter bullshit. I assure you, your loved one made it back Home. They have lived in their own private hell already.
In the work I do, I have communicated with many souls who have left the Earth plane this way. What I can tell you is they all go to a Heaven of their heart’s making. They no longer are haunted by the fears, the tears and the pain they once knew. They return to who they were authentically, quirks and all.
Do they regret it? The answer is yes and no. They are at peace and have shed those lower human emotions, so “regret” isn’t the right word. But they do see there are things that could have been done differently and they will learn and grow from where they are now.
When asked, they will tell you they suffered terribly and when they made the decision to do what they did, their mind was all over the place, illogical and no longer under their control. They just wanted the pain to stop, and it was all they could think about. If substance abuse was involved, that adds another layer and added to that pain is a profound sense of failure shame and worthlessness. They cannot feel joy, no matter how hard they try, they find it fleeting. Sometime they cannot find a way to communicate what it is they are feeling. Understand this is not a disorder where you “try harder”. It isn’t about that at all. What is needed is support to face what is haunting them as we humans really suck at feeling anything other than pleasure. Many people fear feeling, not understanding the resistance to it is what creates depression and addiction.
If it is you who is struggling with suicidal notions, please love yourself enough to do something. Talk to a doctor, call or text a crisis line (1-800-273-8255) or reach out to a friend you trust.
Anything… but please, do something.
If you have lost a loved one this way and wonder if they are ok, I assure you, they are. They return to wholeness as we all do. They continue to learn and grow from the other side, at a slower pace.
If you have been impacted by suicide, may your tender hearts be blessed with immeasurable peace, and know your loved one is being restored to their whole self and is free from suffering.
Rebecca Costello, Psychic Medium
Dancing Elk Shamanic Healing