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To the Loved One I Lost to Suicide

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Editor's Note

If you experience suicidal thoughts or have lost someone to suicide, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741.

The second I saw my best friend’s name show up on my phone I knew that there was something wrong. He never just randomly calls me, he would also text me beforehand to see if I could talk. My heart dropped when I saw that he was calling to confirm one of my worst fears.

A few minutes before he called, I was mindlessly scrolling through Facebook while walking to my car. I wasn’t really paying much attention, but then I came across a spot written by your mom. It was long and there were multiple pictures of you attached which seemed very out of character. The second I read the words “our child has died from depression/bipolar disorder,” I felt my world begin to crumble. That was the moment that I realized I didn’t get my usual “good morning, beautiful” text from you that day. I immediately put my phone in my pocket and got in the car. I knew that I couldn’t be alone when I finished reading that post so I drove straight to my aunt’s house.

As I was pulling into the subdivision my phone rang, I saw my friend’s name and I knew what he was going to tell me. I almost didn’t answer because I wasn’t ready for it to feel real. As soon as I answered he asked what I was doing; I told him that I was driving and then I said that I knew what he was going to tell me. I thanked him for confirming and then told him that I would talk to him later. Honestly, after that the next few days were a blur. There really isn’t a way to articulate the emotions that I felt. I’ve been through loss before, but I was grieving in a new and painful way that I didn’t even know existed.

Six weeks later my emotions still feel like a devastating tornado. I go through waves of feeling sad, angry, confused and so many other feelings that I don’t even know how to articulate. Sometimes I get so frustrated that you left me here without you, I want to be so mad at you. You knew how much I need you and how much I love you, and you just chose to leave me forever. But then my heart breaks all over again when I realize just how much pain you were feeling and that you truly are never coming back. When I found out your time of death I went back and looked at our last text thread, we had talked six hours prior. I spent days analyzing our last conversations trying to find a sign or a red flag that you were in danger, but no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t find a single one. I so badly want to be able to go back in time and do something differently, but I know that it wouldn’t change anything because there was no way for me to know what was going on in your head.

There is no way to describe the hole that I feel in my heart where you belong. It will always remain empty because there will never be another person or another thing that could take your place. I grieve for you every single day. Honestly, I’m still lost on how to live my life without you in it. I still go to call and text you like it’s a normal day and then remember that you won’t ever answer again. I read our text conversations and listen to the voicemail that I have from you over and over again, so that I can hear you accent when you say “sweetheart” and so I can feel like you’re closer to me, even if it’s just for a second.

“Grief, I’ve learned, is really just love. It’s all the love you want to give but cannot. All that unspent love gathers up in the corners of your eyes, the lump in your throat, and in the hollow part of your chest. Grief is just love with no place to go.”
~Jamie Anderson


Photo credit: a-wrangler/Getty Images

Originally published: April 14, 2019
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