It was around 2:00 am, my phone rang, it was my step-father. I immediately thought something was wrong with my mother. She has been chronically ill most of my life and in the back of my head I was thinking, “oh no, this is it, she’s gone.” As my step-father continued, the next phrase didn’t seem real….”your brother has shot himself”. Nowhere in my mind did this make sense.
It has been almost three months since that night and I still question why. I find myself “googling” his name often, subconsciously hoping something other than obituaries will come up. But still, there they are, he’s still gone. There will never be another conversation, another voicemail, another silly text, another hug, another “love you little brother”. There will never be another…anything. I think about it daily and I have cried some good cries in solitude but I don’t “feel” as much as I did about it a month or so ago. Is something wrong with me? Shouldn’t I be grieving more? I miss my brother immensely and I loved him very much, shouldn’t I be beside myself? I read stories of those that can’t sleep, can’t stop crying, can’t eat and I wonder why I don’t feel this way. I just want this all to be a dream.
You took your own life April 20th at 56 years old. When we heard that you never made it home the night before, we were hoping you had gone to your cabin which you said so many times, spoke to your soul. We were hoping that you needed some quiet and calm being surrounded by nature.
I will never forget that afternoon when the police cars pulled into my driveway. One officer told me to have a seat. He then told me that you had been found and that he was sorry to tell me that you were deceased. You took your life in the very place that spoke to your soul. Your happy place. My stomach turned, I couldn’t think, couldn’t drive. I instantly felt the urge to scream WHY???
I asked how you died. The method you used was something that you had to have researched to find. We have found your journals. You planned this for some time. Just waiting for the final straw. I know that you have fought mental illness most of your life.
The last time you were here I repeatedly asked you how I could help you, did you need to go to the hospital. You stood up, told me you were fine and walked out the door. Why wouldn’t you let me help you? You walked out the very door I expect you to come walking through every day since.
Where four siblings once stood, stand only three. Our children and grandchildren are taking it the worst. How they loved their Aunt Julie. Emily kept your ashes in her room until your burial. She couldn’t handle the thought of you being kept at the funeral home. Your urn was taken to Dylan’s new house. He was so excited for you to see it but you never will. He wants you to be proud of him. That’s how much they love you. You were surrounded by love but your illness didn’t allow you to see or feel it.
You have also put me in a hell of a spot. I was the one that had the police do a welfare check on you so I was the one that was told about your death. had to call and make arrangements to have your body brought home, I had to call the medical examiner and hear about the position they found you in, I had to call the funeral home, I had to tell my family that you were gone. How could you have done that to me?
You left before mom’s 80th birthday in August. We were planning a party for her. I don’t know how we can celebrate her life when all we’ll be thinking about is how you ended yours and left us heartbroken.
Your siblings, nieces, nephews and mom had to get rid of your clothes and toiletries so your boyfriend of 15 years could semi function in the house that he shared with you. The house next door to ours. Your choice to end your life has left a trail of devastation. Now I get to be the executor of your “estate”.
I hope that you have finally found peace and are free of pain. Your family and friends’ pain has just begun.
My pain has just begun.
My big brother and only sibling took his life last week. He seemed sad in the week leading up to it but never did any of us think he would take his life. The guilt is endless, all the warning signs I missed. He was at my house almost every day and best friends with my husband. Our family is so distraught. I always protected him my entire life and now I didn’t. I was minutes late to the scene. I pray that he is safe and worry free. Every day gets longer and worse without him here.
My sister killed herself about a month and a half ago on March 13th. She was 17.5 years old. I’m four years older than her. I’m having a hard time talking about it but reading the other stories on this site really helped me. It made me feel less alone that others are going through this too. I know I haven’t had a long time to move through my grief but I wanted to share some things that have helped me so far. Therapy has helped. So has journaling. Whenever I feel really terrible, forcing myself outside to take a walk never fails at making it a little easier to breathe. I’ve been watching videos of people talking about their near death experiences and I’ve found that comforting. For me it’s also been helpful to listen to podcasts and read books on sibling loss processes. Somehow understanding the process makes it feel less scary. Maybe at some point I’ll be more ready to share about my sister. I miss her so much. Before I read these stories I felt so alone and like no one could possibly understand. I want to thank everyone on here for sharing their stories. Hearing them has really made a difference. I’ve been feeling so much regret. I wish I had done more to support my sister. It makes it more bearable to know that other people feel similarly.
I miss you both. I’ve been listening to your old favorite artists to feel closer to the both of you. Nick, it has been 13 years since I got to see your goofy smile. I’m all grown up now. I’ll never stop telling the story about how you pulled the trampoline over to the side of the house and tried to jump onto it from the roof with me. Mama heard your footsteps up there and yelled at you so loud I think the whole neighborhood heard! I wish you hadn’t made the dumb decision that you did. You were still so young but you were an adult and you knew better. Mama misses you every single day, and I know I miss you too. Your son is a cool dude, he’s going to be in high school soon! I wish you were here to see how he’s just like you.
Bobby, it’s been 7 years since you left us. And I know it’s a mix of experiencing your death as an adult, instead of a kid, and having been closer to you all those years, but it’s still so much harder for me to think about you, and talk about you, than it is about Nick. You were more complicated, too. We had a weird relationship, you were so much older than me. Your daughter is two years younger than me and since you had her in high school and raised her across the hall from me, she and I are more like siblings than aunt and niece. But you always treated me like your cool little sister, not your child, and in high school I thought you were the coolest dude I knew. I absolutely LOVED the days you’d roll up to school to pick me up in your pimped out white Tahoe, blasting 2pac. Giving me advice on how to be more confident at school, to get people to respect me. I never felt more cool. I also never felt more alone than the day my mom told me you left us in my high school parking lot. And I had to tell your daughter. I have seen her grow into such a strong woman despite what life has thrown at her. We miss you so badly, not a day goes by that you don’t cross our minds. She’s the only one I talk to about you anymore. I think she’s the only one who will ever get it.
I like to think both of you are together, somewhere, playing video games, having rap battles and making mischief like you always used to. I hope the both of you are chillin like villains, wherever you are. I love you both so much, always.
My younger brother hung himself 6 weeks ago, he was 58. He had 6 sisters, I was the closest in age to him. I have no siblings close in age now.
I thought I was handling this but now the bad days are more frequent.
He left behind a wife and four boys and I cannot imagine how they are coping.
It seems like my friends just don’t get it or think you should have moved on by now. That is okay as I don’t need them, just sad, sad days.
My Brother took his own life by hanging, it will be 5 years on Easter Monday, I miss him so much and think about him every day, he was my only sibling and my best friend, he never got over the tragic deaths of our Mum and Dad and struggled to move on, he was intelligent and had a sense of humour to match, I just feel completely numb alot of the time and feel I’ve been cheated out of the best years of my life with him, I just constantly miss him and feel so low and down.
I often write to you, I have a book specifically for you and letters to you. I often find I wrote to you when I’m feeling overwhelmed with sadness and pain.
I want to speak aloud to you, but I still can’t. The lump that forms in my throat when I try and talk to you is huge and stops my voice, but writing to you is the same really. And I think conversations with you every day too.
The pain of losing you sometimes hits me just as hard as it did when I saw Dad’s name on my phone nearly 2 years ago. Hits me from nowhere and your 2 year old niece often wipes my tears. She’s incredible and you would love her so much. Not just for the little person she’s become, the character, the attitude and sass but for how she continues to be my strength when I don’t have any. And she knows all about you. She thinks your funny. Our house phone rang a few months back and she answered it. When I asked who it was she said it was uncle Jamie, I hope you were there in some way.
It’s now been 2 years since I last saw you, last hugged you. I can still feel that hug, it was different to our normal hugs, harder and tighter because it was the first time I had seen you since she ended your marriage and you were hurting.
I found a charity that has been incredible for me, just having someone to talk to and be completely honest with about my feelings, my anger, my confusion, my guilt, my regrets and every other emotion. Someone who has been through it themselves in some capacity so it’s ok to say some of the awful the things I think.
For the first time last week, I actually sat down with a cuppa during nap time and thought to myself ‘I’ll give J a call in a sec’. I don’t think I’ve ever done that, that hit me like a bus.
My life will never be the same, this hole in my heart will never mend and everything in my life is now referred to as before or after you. But I am so grateful to have had you for your forever.
I always sign off with ‘miss you everyday’ but that doesn’t quite do it really, there’s missing someone and then there’s this that I haven’t yet found a word for. So until I do find a word to describe just how much I miss you, I miss you everyday! Xxxx
My sweet girl,
I miss you. I have no words. I have nothing to say. I just have this heaviness in my heart. I love you. Memories of you keep flooding my head. There are so many things we’ve done together, so many moments we’ve shared. The good, the bad, the silly, the crazy. It’s been a year and throughout this year, there’s nobody whom I have shared any such moments with. Nobody knows me like you did. I remember the way you talked, you walked, the way you were so obsessed with your hair and skin, how you would always have a bottle of water with you to drink, the way you’d always have your cozy night dress on before sleeping, how you loved animals and they loved you back, how kind, how sweet, how much of a good driver you were, your kind of songs and your love for food, your beautiful hair, skin, your long hands, your well kept nails, how you’d dance, your smile, how you’d raise your hands up when your stomach ached from laughing too much. The thing is Dei, I just miss you so much that I don’t cry anymore. It hurts too much. I want to see you. I will hold on to all the memories I have of you until I see you again.
Hey Johnny, I wasn’t ready to lose you. You took your life on the 19th of last month. It’s been ridiculously hard without you. I wish I could talk to you again, I wish I could’ve given you a hug and tell you everything was going to be okay.
I got you out of our toxic families house in October, you had lived with me since then. When you left to visit them, you never said goodbye, or gave me a hug before you left, like you normally did. I wish I could’ve saved you. You kept me grounded all these years and I feel so lost without you.
You’re my baby brother, we were going to go bowling on your 21st birthday, we were five months away from celebrating your birthday before I got that phone call.
They wouldn’t even bury you. They cremated you, turned you to ashes. And guess what necklaces they chose to carry you around in? A bullet. It’s horrific that they don’t see anything wrong with memorializing you that way.
You were the purest person I knew. You were my best friend. You were the one person in the world I felt wasn’t against me. I never thought I’d outlive you. Dad has been pretty broken but he’s been emailing me, checking up on me. Dad didn’t leave your side after you passed. I wish I could’ve been there, this was the first time I truly hated living so far away from our hometown.
They took pictures after the doctors called time of death, I haven’t had the closure, until today when dad sent them to me. I wish it weren’t real. I wish you were still here. I wish you didn’t leave the world so soon. You were like a guardian angel in my life, and I wasn’t ready for you to leave. I don’t think I ever would’ve been.
My heart breaks everyday, but I’m trying. No one in life ever prepares you for the heartbreak of losing someone you love. I love you, Johnny, forever and always, you’ll always be my baby brother. My twin born four years late.
-I love you so much, Katie