My son, and only child, died by suicide on April 29, 2014. He was 25. His battle with depression was deeper than we knew; I think deeper than he knew as well. He lived far away from us, so we didn’t “see” anything. According to friends, classmates and professors, he was not even on their radar as someone who was either depressed or suicidal.
I do believe he attempted to use his prescribed medication to lift him out of the depression, in the month before his death. After his death, I learned he had done that before. This final time, I believe it had the opposite effect and exacerbated the suicidal thoughts and deepened his trance. The disease gained the upper-hand and he was powerless against it.
So, how does my opening paragraph address anything about anger? Well, suppose he had cancer or another life threatening physical ailment? Would I be angry with him for dying or would I direct my anger at the disease? Would I hold myself accountable for not knowing, or seeing the signs, or doing enough to help him? Or would I instead talk about his valiant fight? How he gave it all he could until the disease finally gained the upper-hand and his will to live and our love for him was not enough to win the battle?
I have not had anger at my son because I simply don’t accept that MY son did this to himself. I know the disease did it. Sure, I’m plenty angry that my incredibly brilliant, kind, funny, and handsome son would get this illness. And that his strain turned out to be the fast moving, aggressive kind of depression. Yes, I wish it could have been me instead. I would have died for him in less than a heartbeat.