Welcome to the Sibling Survivors Site!

The Sibling Survivors of Suicide Loss site aims to provide a safe place for anyone who has lost a sister or brother to suicide. It’s a place to share memories, discuss your feelings and experiences, and to share photos. It’s a place to connect with others who also miss their sister or brother.

The site was created in 2001 by Michelle Linn Gust. She passed the site on to the POS-FFOS Internet Community in November of 2014. It officially re-opened on January 4, 2015.

We invite you to explore the site and participate. We need you; help us make this site a safe and supportive place for other sibling survivors. You can participate by Creating a  Guest Post, sharing an Inspirational Thought or Message, or Writing a Letter to your Sibling. Please see those pages for more information.

Sibling Survivors is maintained by volunteers from the Parents of Suicides (POS) and Friends and Families of Suicides (FFOS) Internet Community and others. Learn more about these groups on the About Us page.

My little Brother Josh is Gone

Hey you guys,
It’s three months and a few days, since my little Brother took his life. Died in his little room that all too often was his cave. Did it a day before my 32 Birthday (thank’s man, i never liked my birthdays, but that’s harsh …) and just 800 meters away from me. We always cared for each other, knew about the periods of depressions which plagued us – mine got shorter, his got longer over the years. I tried so hard to help him, when his girlfriend left him two years ago. They were 10 years together, since they were 18. She still loved him but couldn’t carry him through his depressions, she needed to live. Then he was kicked out of university without a diploma last year, after 16 semesters. And he was the brightest man i knew, he just wasn’t able to cope with the system. We had a rough time, when i tried to push him out of his phlegmatism (read Kafka’s  Little Fable and add a whole ton of stubbornness, and you get my little brother). I tried to show him that i know how it feels, to be in your room, not being able to leave, to be overwhelmed by isolation, storming thoughts and headache. He just sometimes opened up emotionally and he always thought he could just use the sheer force of his brilliant rational mind to control himself, talk himself out of his sadness and fear. He meditated, microdosed on LSD, read countless books, but he never f***ing talked about his angst with me or one of the many other people who loved him. Then i had much to do, had to cope with other parts of the family – a lot of s*** on that front too. Had to study for my final exams. And i told him, the second to last time ever that we talked, that it’s his turn to call me or come by, that I need him too and cannot always run after him. I did not know how dark the place had gotten, where he went to more and more often. He never called me or came by…thought he could just vanish from the world.
Thought, so he wrote, he would die ‘lonely and poor’. He WAS lonely and poor, but he didn’t need to be. Just an arm’s length away, but a heart’s distance sometimes can’t be measured…
He was my brother, my best friend, my intellectual nemesis, my anchor.
I f***ing hate him
and I f***ing love him.

Struggling

I lost you 10 months ago and it still feels like yesterday. You were so kind and empathetic and sometimes I wondered if that was part of it, you felt too much of this world. I finally took a vacation to our favorite spot and I am sitting here thinking it feels wrong to be in “your place” without you. I want to spread your ashes but I haven’t been able to yet. I can’t understand, I replay the entire year and find myself immersed in guilt. You talked to me about taking your life and 7 months later you were gone. I was so scared of losing you and breaking your trust that I didn’t tell anyone. I wish I could go back, I will always wish I could go back. I am angry with the pandemic because I was so worried about getting you sick that I saw you rarely and your mental health declined out of sight. I am struggling to find my life after you but man I am really trying. Eric, my baby brother, I miss you so much and I love you forever. Love, you big sis

It’s been 9 days but I miss him so much already

On May 30, my 26 year old baby brother, Matt, committed suicide in my son’s bed by shooting himself in the head (no, my son wasn’t in there). I heard the shot and the sound will haunt me forever. He had paranoid schizophrenia, that caused him to think I was against him, and I was his “person.”  I raised him since he was 5 and he was my best friend. He knew more about me than anyone in this world. He couldn’t handle the things his mind was trying to tell him, but he knew it shouldn’t be telling him that. I watched him fight a very painful war in his head, but he refused to go to the doctor. I tried for 3 years, but he said he didnt want to be “zombie-fied” on pills. I saw the pain his own mind caused him and I would never want him to live that way, but I also feel that if he didn’t want to have to live on pills “zombie-fied” (like our uncle who has been institutionalized for 15 years) that he shouldn’t have to live that way either. I don’t know how to feel. It gives me some small amount of peace to know he isn’t suffering anymore, but the pain is something I didn’t know existed. I will never get over this, and Im not sure how to find a new “normal”, because it will never be normal again. I just really hope that at the time, he knew I loved him more than life itself and I would have taken his pain for him if I could have. I hope when he died, he knew I loved him and not what his demons were telling him . Its comforting to know I’m not alone in this horrendous heartbreak and others know how I feel, because its hard to even put into words. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

7 yr anniversary

Today May 31, 7 year anniversary, my brother is no longer here . Can’t believe it’s been this long. First few years were agonizing, questioning whether this really happened. I called the coroner who was sympathetic and explained to me somewhat though hard to understand. I felt like someone else was there who coerced my brother and thinking someone was getting away. My mom said I should go see a counselor, I never did. I still stay awake at nights, searching online for something? I don’t really know. At some point I came to realization that my brother did take his life and in a sense took mine too. Sometimes I question my purpose in life. I feel like I’m silently grieving with it no where to go. I think to myself, if my brother were here, we’d be a little family again. I miss my brother then, I miss my brother now, I’ll miss my brother forever.

Wish you could see me

Hey Tonio,
I made it. It is the end of my senior semester of college. I’m going to graduate soon. You made it one difficult time of my life tho. I lost you at the very start of my freshman year. I had to learn to cope with your decision while over 2,000 miles from home, in a place I knew no one and thrown into the chaos that first-semester college has on any freshman deals with. I managed to complete all my semesters. I managed to learn to cope with the grief enough to do what I had to do. But now… I’m struggling to complete my final assignments. I feel guilty for my success in the journey that I started just before I lost you. I keep remembering my thoughts when I first received the call. How I shouldn’t have left you, that maybe if I stayed you wouldn’t be gone. You promised me you would visit me here. That was what you told me the morning I was leaving to drive across the country. We had plans and promises. You were so proud of the fact that I was making something of myself. You knew how much of my growing up was spent taking care of you and raising the little boys. You knew I gave up my childhood to be the adult, even when you supposed to be taking care of us I took up the responsibilities because you couldn’t. Every day now I would give anything to go back to taking care you instead of me experiencing life. I just want you back. I want to talk to you again. I want you to see the fact I’m finishing school. I want to know I made you proud.
I love you man,
hope your having a blast wherever you are now.
Love your baby sister

My hero back then

When this year is over, it will have been 10 years since you jumped from that tower. You were 23 back then, and I was 9.
Even though I was a little boy at that time I still have these memories of you. What makes it even worse is knowing how blurry my memories of you have become, it makes me sad.
Since you’ve left there has always been this emptiness in my life I am constantly trying to fill – mostly to my own detriment. It’s like a shadow looking over my shoulder all the time.
Back then you were my hero, my role model, my big brother who I looked up to. For a long time I have been unconsciously looking for a replacement-role-model – never found.
It feels sh**ty that I never really got to know. Without success I have been trying to piece together a picture of the person I didn’t get to know that much. But mostly without success.
Thinking about you gives me this bittersweet feeling of homeliness and, for a moment, the emptiness vanishes.
Sometimes waking up after a dream, thinking you are still alive. Often I think about what could have been.
I’m not religious but I wish there would be something like heaven just so I could meet you again.

Rogue Wave

I am approaching the 5 year anniversary of my younger brothers death. Last year was bearable…but this year is so much worse again. The pandemic isolation is not helping I am sure. I had a dream with him a few nights ago, the first since about a week after we lost him. Lost is such a vague word when talking about death. But in this case totally appropriate. He was last seen jumping off a dock into the freezing Hudson River. His body was never found. He’s not buried anywhere. No one wrote him an obituary or got him a memorial stone to put anywhere. (No one, being my parents or his wife) The apparent reason being…with no body, he’s not legally considered dead for 7 years. I don’t personally see that as a reason to take zero action in those areas. We are all pretty open about it…but not open enough for my liking. His children don’t know what really happened and we can’t speak too loudly for fear of them hearing the truth. They were 5 and 7 when it happened…sure you can’t tell them all the details…but I want to shout it from the rooftops to try and help other people and I don’t feel like I can. So I stay silent.
My therapist has been a lifesaver. For a while he kept asking me if I was feeling angry. I wasn’t. I miss him. I love him. He was 7 years younger than me. I remember being an only child. I was so lonely. I prayed every night after I went to bed for a brother or sister and I was so happy when he was born. On top of that, he was everything I wasn’t. He had a light complexion and a light personality. He was SO funny. No one made me laugh as much…except for my husband…who my brother introduced me to.
But I am angry today. I’m angry at him for most likely thinking that I’m tough and I’d be ok. I’m angry at him for ruining our family…even though we “keep it together”. I’m angry for him abandoning me. For making a decision to leave me alone. Leaving me to worry about his 3 kids and wife. To worry and take care of our aging, now broken parents. Ruining what everyone has told me is “the best decade of your life”…and for people telling me this is the best decade of your life. Angry at him for calling to say goodbye. Angry at myself for not knowing what that phone call was. Angry at myself for not taking care of myself over the last few years…eating like crap, gaining weight, not caring about brushing my teeth for days, wearing makeup or resting…basically not taking care of myself like I know I should. Angry at my parents for not saying the word suicide. Angry at my mom for saying she knows what it’s like to lose a sibling. She lost one of many to illness.
I remember, in the beginning of my grief “journey” reading that grief is like a wave. In the beginning the waves just smash over you and you feel like you’re drowning, and as time goes by the waves get farther apart and you begin to be able to catch your breath. I NEVER thought I would see my way through this at all. I never could imagine how I would ever get my life back to any kind of normal. Well, for all of you out there that are just beginning this awful journey…the waves do get father apart. Some days there are rogue waves that come out of nowhere and knock you over. Like today. Still life is ok. It’s just different. The thing that keeps me going is trying to honor my brother my not letting my life get overwhelmed by what he did. Today I’m mad at him and don’t feel like honoring him…but that gives me some kind of comfort too…because that such a normal feeling…being mad at a sibling. I guess we’re just fighting today.

My Older Brother James :/

I miss my brother so much. He and I were not very close, and I wish we had been. He hung himself on April 3rd, 2018 and my family has never been the same since 🙁 I never thought it was possible to miss someone you hardly know. I wish I could have been there to tell him I love him, I just didn’t know he was suffering so much and needed help. It breaks my heart in two to think of him writing the note and going into the Garden of the Gods with the intent to kill himself. He was always in and out of jobs, had trouble holding onto money, and it makes me so sad that the last words to his girlfriend were that he felt like he had no friends. I wish he was here and I could give him a big hug :'( Life just isn’t the same without him here. </3

I wish you were here…

Seven months ago I lost my brother. A year ago I almost lost myself. We were exactly five months apart. The day after my attempt, he sent me a text message that basically said it’s okay to make mistakes and that I just need to learn from it. He didn’t ask me very much about it but was so supportive at the same time. He listened but never made me talk. He was so understanding. He was everything I wanted to be.

He paved a path I thought I’d be able to follow forever. When his mental health was declining, I took it upon myself to continue that path for him. I wanted him to know that he could follow me too. I wanted to improve my own mental health and set a good example for him like he had always done for me. But I was, and still am, just fifteen. I was still recovering from my own attempt and I couldn’t get better fast enough.

*details of suicide, please don’t read if it’ll trigger you*

My brother jumped off of an overpass and was hit by a moving train at around 10pm on July 27th, 2020. It was 12am when we got the knock at our door. We had to drive 45 minutes to get to the hospital they airlifted him to. We were told he was in the ICU and that we could go see him. Before we could though, the doctors listed off his injuries from head to toe. They let us know he had a pulse but it wasn’t strong enough. My dad and I went to see him first. I had to see my idol laying in a hospital bed barely breathing. I held his hand and it was so cold. They had a heated blanket on him but it was still so damn cold. He always had beautiful eyes and eyelashes. I stared at his face and tried to remember it and burn it into my brain. I held his hand and tried to remember the way it felt in mine. When they unplugged the machine, I had to watch his chest stop moving. My parents were crying so loud. My mom was devastated. I tired to force myself to be strong for her but I just couldn’t.

I just wanted to scream and scream until I couldn’t anymore. I do that now. There are days where all I can do is scream. When my mom goes to work and I’m in my room alone, my pain pours out of my throat. It hurts but I can’t bring myself to stop. I just wish he was here.