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06/10/2016

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Virginia Picchi

Thank you for sharing your story. I lost my son 51/2 years ago to suicide. He was diagnosed bipolar and struggled for years. He was clean and sober for almost 2 years but didn't know what to do with his life. He was 39 and and an accomplished concrete finisher. He was also an avid excellent golfer and good at any sport. I found him in his dad's garage and am still devasted he didn't come to me in his darkness. We were together the day before getting him ready to move into his new apartment. Girlfriend problem the night before he took his life. So sad every day!!

Rona Ross

Hello Sheila,
Thank you for your insightful and compassionate article about your husband, you and your family and bipolar disorder. My daughter died of bipolar disorder at 23 years old. She fought with the illness for over 12 years. My son is scared to have children and we have searcher for genetic help but have not found any.
I wonder if you can recommend any reading materials or doctors willing to help in this area?

Maribeth Brownhill

Thank you for sharing. I lost my husband this past January. I am still immersed deeply in the mire that is grief. I appreciate that in time I will work my way to the surface and find meaning again.

I pray that you and your daughter continue to move forward and cast light on the shadow that is mental illness. We need more advocates in the world, so that we can end the stigma and get our loved ones the help they so deserve and need.

Lin Cochran

Thank you for writing this and writing it so beautifully I read every word. Also being a journalist you know what I mean. It was my son who morphed from a brilliant light into something other. It has been eight years. I think by the time they end their lives most if not all of them are mentally ill. That's why for the past few years I have glommed onto every word I can find about neuroscience, neurotheology, neuro-anything that helps me understand how the mind changes the brain. How we are not victims of our brains. How our minds are powerful to make physical changes in our brains. Yes, as you say, there is hope for a brighter future for our children, grandchildren, and for us. Thank you so much for sharing. Love to you and your beautiful daughter.

Kim Portmess

Thank you so much for this well written article that is both informative and compassionate. I lost my loving and passionate Dad to depression and addiction just two months ago. My birthday is on Father's day. I will be reading this article a few more times I believe.

Lupe Baker

Thank you for sharing I had a rough night as I think of my son's birthday today. My other son's birthday is next week as well. This will be their first birthdays without their father. I'm glad I opened up my email and read your story. It really helped me to understand more. On August of this year it will be my ex husband first anniversary of his death. You're a very strong mother and I admire that. Unconditional love is what I teach my children as well. Once again thank you for sharing.

Valerie Barnett

Thank you for sharing and helping to destigmatise mental illness and suicide. My grandmother, mother, and twin sister all died from suicide and I hope with more openness, compassion and understanding, coupled with research we can help save many lives.
I too voraciously read every book about mental illness and genetic markers and agree we can defeat the odds by eliminating the shame and fear in patients so they can get the treatment they so deserve.
I am so sorry for your loss and send best wishes to your daughter for her birthday on a day that will be filled with such mixed emotions.
Valerie Barnett

Patricia

I so needed to read this this morning as tears stream down my cheeks,reading the last line. My beautiful 19 year old son, Owen took his life 8 months and 9 days ago.Thank You

Michaela

Thank you for your inspiring words of encouragement and understanding. I too lost my partner when we were so innocent, young and in love. Your words resonated with me. My boyfriend suffered long and hard with an undiagnosed major depressive disorder. After his death I became very ill and was myself diagnosed with BiPolar disorder. With a great deal of hard work, therapy, research and overall understanding of mental illness, I have been able to overcome the obstacles, the symptoms, the stigmas and teach others that there is hope, a chance, a rebirth that allows you to live, laugh and love again. A diagnosis is not always a death sentence, with a lot of hard work, determination, healthy relationships and love, all things can be overcome. My boyfriend's death came a year after I graduated college, ten years later after hard work and determination, I went back to school and earned my MSW. Now I work as a licensed clinical social worker in a residential setting with adolescent boys who suffer with the same mental health issues that plagued my best friend all those years ago. The constant reminder of his death and suicide in general has given me hope and strength to carry on despite adversity. There is always hope for a stronger brighter future. Thank you again for sharing. Sending hugs and prayers for you and your daughter.

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