Suicide Post: please read.

If you have been personally touched by suicide, know someone who has, or just want to be better educated on the topic- please read.

While I’m still processing, I know I have to get some thoughts down in order to keep from overflowing.

This past weekend, I volunteered at a camp for kids & young adults who have all lost a parent or sibling to suicide. Many of the volunteers had lost a child, sibling, or parent to suicide. Other volunteers just have the biggest hearts and want to help change the world through compassion and caring. I thought this weekend would be the hardest thing I have ever done, but, it turned out to be the most healing. I firmly believe that every single moment since I received the phone call of “your brother is dead. He’s been shot. Come over now,” has led to this past weekend. That’s almost 11 years of moments on the grief journey.

Every person at this camp, just got it. Every time we were blamed or shamed, they got it. Every time someone mentioned suicide & Hell, they got it. Every look of pity. Every ounce of the stigma that comes with a suicide loss. Every time someone asked how they died, instead of simply saying, “I’m sorry for your loss.” Every rude and disrespectful comment.

These are my people, my tribe. It look me almost 11 years, but, this weekend has changed my life & was well worth the wait.

The children and young adults had so much to say this weekend about suicide. This is a whole new generation that is not making ripples, but, waves with regards to tearing down the stigma of mental health/ substance abuse & suicide. “Ask me how he lived, not how he died,” – Sarah Ash (little buddy, now Young Adult). Another thing mentioned in our group was, “that was not my brother that died. He was sick. His sickness overcame him, and he lost the fight to suicide.” How very true and very well spoken. My brother that died from suicide, was NOT the little brother that I grew up with. AT ALL. Just as cancer can invade your body, mental health & substance abuse can invade your mind.

If I had to take away 1 thing from my life changing weekend, it would be this: a little buddy was brave enough to stand up in front of everyone at the memorial service. She said, “the worst thing I can do is stay silent about my suicide loss.” I’m 100% on board. Ending stigma around suicide & mental health.

#askmehisname


Carly Lafore is a licensed therapist, wife, mom of two, comfort zone camp volunteer, Christ follower, daughter, and a sister to a brother in heaven. She is a self described suicide thriver. #askmehisname