It’s February! And the year is 2018!!! What!!? When did that happen???

I wasn’t supposed to live past the millennium… I was supposed to be in hell with all the rest of the un-normals! For all the abominable sins of speaking my truth, accepting responsibility for how much my wonderful life is panning out and I made it to here! To now?! I’m still in the here and now!!? I’m alive!! Ah! Okay… so maybe that was being a bit too optimistic!! Being alive means feelings and stuff! Granted there’s always time to mess up yet again!! If my head is free of migraines, if I actually wake up during daylight hours… and I have ventured beyond my bedroom door to the great downstairs of reality. Did I really leave all those lights on!!? The incessant talking between inner child and grown up does my head in!! Seriously!!! Of course you turned the lights out, and locked the doors and not particularly in that order coz we both know the ocd would have had to before counting the stairs up to the bathroom and bed!! I don’t do feelings… I can’t allow it. Numb is better. Sure the muscles are locking up everyday now, and the pain is so intense yet the exhaustion is overwhelming when I have to remember to RELAX! And any second now; Relax!!!! Anyone would think I have unresolved trauma!! Nice one Sherlock!!

So, it’s been a long time… years in fact. I don’t remember feeling as uptight/tense/On red alert! Perhaps that’s because I was being treated!? I can’t say for sure… my mind scrambles for focus. My eyes sting with exhaustion. What was I saying???!! I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. Nothing really matters.

You know I got on a train this morning and yes! That meant I left the actual house!! Okay so I’m walking to the bus stop (coz this is all so pathetic that I must force myself to do ‘normal’) and I can feel eyes everywhere burning into my back as I shuffle along… I don’t give it away… I don’t let anyone see I’m watching them ALL! I can see them, I can hear them – ok so maybe it’s them, or ‘Them’ from childhood… or me now… or back then or even her!! That little girl that used to scream and scream inside me… until JCW helped her to cry it all out until it was a sobbing sound then NOTHING! Nothing throughout the numb years since some wonderful moron decided to cut all ready incredibly stretched mental health budgets and I was flung out of my cocoon into a cold, echoing terrifying thing I’m supposed to call my life!!! Do what!? It’s taken almost three years to get over that shock and I’m great! I’m doing fantastic now! {insert sarcastic tone}….. yeah, I got lucky!! I actually got to see a psychologist guy for waaaay over the allocated time-slot! I mean, it’s not like I asked for this illness, and I can tell you it’s boring talking about it, but we have to keep on keeping on about it!!

Can you believe the actual words are said to my face… “you really look quite normal” – “she behaved herself very well” – “how wonderful to have you back!” ….okay! Enough already!!

Everyone step back.

Go on… move!

Get back behind the line and LISTEN up!!

The short version for now. Yes, I have a Mental illness. It has a name. It’s called Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. No it’s not funny and I’m not nuts. Nor am I crazy! Yes, I’m on medication. Because bad things happened and that messed my head up…. plus the shock of being spewed from a place of safety (who cares if I felt safer in a psychiatric hospital ?!! At least I wasn’t in this much agony trying to pretend everything is hunkydorypeachyking!!!!!!!)


I felt respected. I felt human!!

Three years on and I’m far more withdrawn from society with it’s dumb rules and regulations… nope! Not interested in fakeness! Not interested in being used and abused…. er, that’s what started this all off many years ago!!!

Despair follows… numbness… dazed… dissociated, disconnected… no friends – I had to distance myself from toxic people. But there’s no manual! People don’t come with filters! They just say stuff in front of me as though I’m not visible! Er, hello?? I’m aware YOU find it awkward that I disappeared from society… but you haven’t half spoilt what was left in the world whilst I was absent.

Blehhh!! {insert frustrated sigh}

I don’t know if I will post this or not… it’s feeling like a rant… I want to be positive. I want to inspire others. But someone somewhere in the system decided I needed to be discharged from inpatient care meaning trauma therapy could not continue and even after months of weekly appointments with a psychologist I was told I had five more sessions and that no, we hadn’t managed to deal with any unresolved traumas as my life was too unstable to risk opening up the cans of worms! What a waste!

What a waste of all those years of nhs resources, therapies, learning safer coping mechanisms; doing what they wanted! All my life I’ve tried doing what ‘they’ want. Trying to keep my bloomin head down, do as I’m told – and all the while reminded I’m the biggest sinner out and will go to hell!

For what? Tell me what it’s all been for!!?

Last time I saw any psychy people was in the first week of January…. on paper I have a care coordinator in reality??? I have me, myself and I trying our best to fake it long enough to make it!

Trying my bestest to be the friend to others I yearn for.

Trying to be the Mum, Sister, Auntie, Friend that I do not have.

Here I am.

A scarred Warrior.

I will rise up (again!)

I will tell my truth.

And I will not hold back when that time comes.

I’m preparing to let it all hit the fan and if I’m really really good, God might just let me watch!

Bye for now




The real reason my blog is not organised…

Okay… so truth be told, I was suicidal. I get that way in greater or lesser measures almost every day! Some days it’s a fleeting thought; other days it is so very intense that I dare not move out of my bed for fear I will act on those urges like I used to!

I was having a particularly bad time with the suicidal urges and so I deleted all the personal posts, believing that I was shutting my life down …even Facebook had a major overhaul with settings put in place to close it down the moment the Facebook hierarchy became aware of my demise.

I hate feeling that way… and when I act in what I believe is in the best interests of the world and later go to write a post… I feel like a right numbskull having deleted all those memories for now I need to write them again!


1st March 2015

Complex PTSD, is not a personality disorder…

The following is by Prof. Judith L Herman

From this document; HERE

Complex PTSD: A Syndrome in Survivors of Prolonged and Repeated Trauma

Judith Lewis Herman

Observers who have never experienced prolonged terror, and who have no understanding of coercive methods of control, often presume that they would show greater psychological resistance than the victim in similar circumstances.

The survivor’s difficulties are all too easily attributed to underlying character problems, even when the trauma is known.

When the trauma is kept secret, as is frequently the case in sexual and domestic violence, the survivor’s symptoms and behavior may appear quite baffling, not only to lay people but also to mental health professionals.

The clinical picture of a person who has been reduced to elemental concerns of survival is still frequently mistaken for a portrait of the survivors underlying character.

Concepts of personality developed in ordinary circumstances are frequently applied to survivors, without an understanding of the deformations of personality which occur under conditions of coercive control.

Thus, patients who suffer from the complex sequelae of chronic trauma commonly risk being misdiagnosed as having personality disorders.

Earlier concepts of masochism or repetition compulsion might be more use fully supplanted by the concept of a complex traumatic syndrome.

Prof. Judith Lewis Herman

Joumal of Traumatic Stress, VoL 5, No. 3, 1992

More of Judith L Herman’s expert knowledge on complex trauma, can be found in her ground breaking book, which I strongly recommend.

10th November 2015

Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in your journey.

It’s always necessary to accept when some part of your life has reached its inevitable end. Closing the door, completing the chapter, turning the page, etc. – it doesn’t matter what you title it; what matters is that you find the strength to leave in the past those parts of your life that are over.

It’s all about embracing the truth: What has happened is uncontrollable; what you do now changes everything!

Of course, knowing this and actually living a lifestyle that reinforces this truth are two very different things. Letting go is NOT easy – it’s a journey that is traveled one day at a time. If you stick with it, here’s what your journey will ultimately teach you:

1. The most powerful changes happen in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over everything you don’t.

2. Most people make themselves unhappy simply by finding it impossible to accept life just as it is presenting itself right now.

3. If you worry too much about what might be, and wonder too long about what might have been, you will ignore and completely miss what is.

4. When you are lost in worry, it is easy to mistake your worries for reality, instead of recognizing that they are just thoughts. Mindfulness is the remedy.

5. The biggest obstacle to growth you’ll ever have to overcome is your mind. Once you can overcome that, you can overcome anything.

6. Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a little while, and that includes

7. YOU. (Read Wherever You Go, There You Are.)

8. You won’t always have it easy, but there is always a reason to be grateful. And the greatest gift of your gratitude is that the more grateful you are, the more present you become.

9. The secret to getting ahead is to focus all of your energy not on fixing and fighting the old, but on building and growing something new.

10. Letting go doesn’t mean you don’t care about something or someone anymore. It’s just realizing that the only thing you really have control over is yourself in this moment.

11. In most cases, you can’t calm the storm – it’s not worth trying. What you can do is calm yourself, and the storm will pass.

12. You can always control the way you respond to what happens, and in your response is your power.

13. Oftentimes letting go is simply changing the labels you place on a situation – it’s looking at the same situation with fresh eyes and an open mind.

14. There is absolutely nothing about your present circumstances that prevents you from making progress, one tiny step at a time.

15. The day you “understood” everything, was the day you stopped trying to figure everything out. The day you find peace and freedom again will be the day you let everything go.

16. You must let go of certainty. And you must remember that the opposite of certainty is not uncertainty, it’s openness, curiosity and a willingness to embrace life as it is, rather than resisting it. The ultimate challenge is to accept yourself exactly as you are, and accept life just as it is, but never stop trying to learn and grow to the best of your abilities.

17. Underneath it all, the hardest part is not really letting go, but rather learning to start over.

18. Stepping onto a brand new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation that no longer fits, or no longer exists.

19. Sometimes it takes a little heartbreak to shake you awake, help you let go, and show you that you are worth so much more than you were settling for.

20. When it comes to social drama, letting go of other people’s rude remarks is the best step forward. Most haters don’t really hate you; they just hate where they are in life, and you’re a reflection of what they wish to become. (Angel and I discuss this in detail in the “Relationships” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)

21. Your heart might be bruised, but it will gradually heal and become capable of feeling the beauty of life once again. It’s happened to you before, and it will happen again – life is always changing. When something ends or someone leaves, it’s because something else or someone else is about to arrive – you will feel alive and whole again soon.

22. Afterthoughts
It can be difficult to leave a long-term life situation behind, even when your inner-wisdom tells you that things aren’t right and it’s time to let go. At this point, you can choose to let go and endure the sudden pain of leaving behind the familiar to make way for a new chapter in your life, or you can stay and suffer a constant, aching pain that gradually eats away at your heart and mind, like a cancer… until you wake up one day and find yourself buried so deep in the dysfunction of the situation that you barely remember who you are and what you desire.
Don’t do this you yourself!
Things will happen that are unexpected, undesirable, and uncontrollable. But you can always choose to take the next tiniest step. Be brave and take it…
Be willing to make mistakes, learn from them, let go of them, and move along.

8th August 2016 – learning from Photographer Sue Bryce

If you are struggling with an illness, if you have a job you hate, if you are having a hard time in your relationships, if you are struggling with your weight, struggling with issues from your childhood, struggling to make ends meet financially or having money issues in general, if you are in physical or emotional pain — this talk is for you.

Sue delivers her most powerful talk to date in this series of self-value videos. What she teaches here can absolutely change the way you see yourself and, ultimately, change your life!

Sue explains in depth how the way you value yourself will show up in your body and your illnesses, in your bank account, in your career, and in your relationships.She dives deep into her own personal experiences and illnesses and how it is all a reflection of how she values herself.

Sue talks us through the feelings of self-hate, shame, and anxiety. Our journey with these intense emotions often can rule our lives, but ultimately, can be let go. You can get back to yourself — the self you want to be — on every level.


I Am Important:

* Sue experienced the collapse of one of her organs and she needed to know why. She began exploring how she was causing this to happen and she found her answers. She found that what we are the result of all of our illnesses.

* Sue believes that health, wealth, and love are all intertwined and they all come from a mirror of what you are worth.

* If you are born into poverty, you have the ability to become wealthy. You can achieve what you want to achieve!

* Every human being wants to be seen, heard, and loved.

Choose Your Pain:

* Once you start taking responsibility for what is “happening” to you, you can begin to take control and choose growth and success.

* Sue believes we choose pain, not joy. We gauge our day by how much pain we feel and when we feel that pain, that will measure how much further you are going to go.

* When you decide you want to make a big change, whether it’s moving or divorce or starting a business, there is both joy and pain that comes with it. Change can be terrifying and anxiety provoking and lonely — all part of pain. So, we are choosing our pain when we make these changes.

* What is the result you want? Are you willing to go through the pain to get there? You must be okay with the pain you will endure to get there!

* It’s the pain that stops us from making the big changes to actually get where we want to go because we are afraid of the pain! So you don’t move. You don’t progress. We don’t run from joy, we run from pain, but we must endure the pain to make the changes and have the joy!

* In reality, we project anxiety into our body and into our life by creating a scenario that hasn’t even happened! This puts you at a completely disempowered state. That is not fear — that is pain.


* Any addiction is a distraction.

* Instead of allowing ourselves to feel pain and allowing it to coming into our body, we anesthetize ourselves with food or alcohol or any other substance.

* When an emotion comes into your body, it will stay there for 90 seconds — no longer! * In order to empower it passed the 90 second mark, you have to re-empower it with a story. (Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor)

* If we ask ourselves, “What am I feeling right now?” and allow ourselves to feel whatever that is for 90 seconds, we can deal with it instead of avoiding it, pushing it down, swallowing it with distractions (addictions). We use so many distractions so that we don’t have to feel it.

Supporting Pain:

* The next time the pain comes to you, welcome it in and FEEL it. You can’t get to the next level in your business or relationship or any big change without feeling it and accepting it.

* Choose your pain! Don’t distract yourself from it with eating, drinking, smoking, shopping, etc.

* You get to be in control of your pain so that things no longer “happen” to you, but you get to make things happen!

* Don’t be afraid of the pain. You are going to get it anyway!

* When you are in pain and can’t deal with it any longer, people will start to support you. Once other people are supporting you (emotionally, financially, etc), you have lost all control of your life.


* We are constantly looking for validation from other people and we think that getting that support and validation will help us to achieve our goals.

* The truth is, if you are asking everyone else to give you some form of acknowledgment or validation, it is not going to help you achieve what you want! You are giving them power instead of empowering yourself! You need to be the one supporting yourself!

* When you put your mind to something and decide you are going to do it, you will achieve it. You won’t need anyone else’s validation or permission.

* Are you talking about it and looking for validation or are you actually doing it? The person who is walking their path is DOING IT and the person looking for validation is talking about it.

* Any area you are not empowered, someone or something will overpower you!

Tipping Point:

* You have the power to decide what dream it is you want to “tip”. You have the power to d

* YOU HAVE THE POWER TO DECIDE TO MAKE THE CHANGE! To get out of debt, to leave your partner, to start your business or whatever it is you want to do. You just have to walk that path of pain so that you can grow to get there!

* I don’t believe in myself = I haven’t tried yet

* You will experience the same drama in your life until you don’t need it anymore, until you have no identity in it, until you learn from it.

* When people don’t believe in you, YOU have to believe in you!!

* Prepare yourself that you will have a pain breakthrough when you are making change. Just remember that it will take you to a place that is better than where you were!

Take A Knee:

* When Sue receives criticism from someone, whether it’s trolling online or from a client or from within a personal relationship — basically anytime she feels hurt — she asks herself WHAT IS THIS SHOWING ME?

* Whatever that criticism is, there is something you can learn from it. If someone is disrespecting you, you must be disrespecting yourself. If you’re not feeling love, it’s because you’re not giving love. If your business is suffering, you are clearly not valuing yourself enough.

* Now this can be a hard thing to accept because, again, it goes back to being responsible for everything that happens to us! The hard part is accepting it without judging it.


* Taking a knee is to ground yourself in the present moment. Experience fully what you are feeling.


* Before getting to the point where Sue is at today, she was so deep into her pain and the stories around her pain, that she wasn’t even conscious of what her life pain was.

* If you are at this point, you are likely not living a life that is congruent with your dreams and you are not the person you want to be!

* When you get to the point when you start overcoming your pain, look back at your pain path that you just took! Remind yourself how incredible you are! You took a chance and believed in yourself and you were brave and courage! You knew it would hurt, but you kept going because you wanted the result more than you wanted the pain. And now you’ve got the result! You will no longer feel afraid of what you cannot do.


* The biggest story you will tell will is the story around your childhood. Your ability to achieve what you have started from what your parents have taught you and what you learned from them.

* When we reach a certain age, usually around 30, we start to think about what we missed out on as a child and we might even have some resentment towards our parents.

* There are so many wounds that we carry from childhood and we have a big story around that. But the truth is, this does not need to be your story any longer. YOU CAN BREAK IT TODAY.

* In order to do that, you must rise above your parents and have compassion for them. They were doing the best they could with what they had and knew. And it’s time to release them. Because whatever story you are telling around this is stopping you from having something NOW.

* What you can’t do now, we often blame our parents for what they didn’t do then. So instead of taking responsibility, you blame your parents.

* You must go beyond your perceived childhood dysfunctions. You are an adult now and you need to forgive them, love them for it, and move past it.


What You Are Not Getting:

* There is often a perception that if you had the world’s perfect parents, you would have all of the things you wish you had.

* The reality is that everything you want is available to you NOW if that is what you really want!

* Even if you have the worst possible parents on the planet, you can still have what you want!

Bring It Back To You:

* Sue believes that mirroring is the answer to ALL growth. You might feel like everything is happening to you and it’s not your fault and it’s not fair, but the truth is that YOU are the protagonist in your own story.

* You must keep bringing it back to YOU!

* If everyone at everyone else’s reactions as a reflection of what they are going through and nothing to do with you, it would change the world. Yet, we just can’t seem to do this.

* When you walk into a room, you see how people are seeing you through the filter of your own mind! We create what we THINK people are thinking about us based on what we think about ourselves!

* You can decide right now that you are worth more. More love, more income, more respect, whatever it is that you want. You can decide this RIGHT NOW.

If You Hate It, Look At It:

* When you don’t like someone, the first question you should ask yourself is: What is it about them that I don’t like? Because whatever it is I don’t like, I’m doing it. You can see yourself reflected back in everybody — whether it’s in a good way or a bad way.

* Often, we are confronted by people who upset us. But, they are also messengers. They are telling you where you need to do work.

* So in business, if you client doesn’t buy from you, Sue is going to ask you where did YOU go wrong!

* If you keep attracting the wrong clients or the wrong partners or the wrong friends, at what stage are you going to wake up and realize that YOU aren’t learning the lessons that are being presented to you?!

* You only hate something that you fear and there is a big lesson in it for you and you must confront it.


* If you want the illness out of your body or the pain out of your body, or the person out of your life, you need to walk through it. You need to see yourself in it.

* The wrong question is, “How do I attract the right client”? The right question is, “What am I seeing shown back to me over and over again?” That your work isn’t good enough? That your value is not good enough? That you can’t engage with people? Your clients and the people in your life are showing you over and over again what you should be working on!

* When Sue’s business starts to fall off, she looks at what SHE IS DOING WRONG! You can turn the energy in your business overnight. But, you have to take full responsibility for it!


* When someone hurts you, remember that they are only disempowering you for a moment, but only long enough for you to see what your weakness is. The person did not give you pain, but simply brought back a very familiar pain that sits so close to the surface.

* Something only hurts us when it’s true.

* You must choose to grow through the pain instead of becoming a victim.

* You can learn to elevate yourself without putting someone down.

* The worst bully is the bully that you are to yourself.

Action & Daily Practice:

* Sue is a firm believer in making an action list and walking towards it with daily practice. She calls is The Vision Paradigm.

* We only see so far and yet we are capable of moving mountains! We see the first surrounding energy and we feel trapped here, but it’s our own perception and reality and it can be distorted and so wrong.

* So you get this belief that you are in a bubble and all that you are allowed to achieve is what is inside that bubble and it’s not true!

* Be aware that as you start to move forward, something on your pain path might knock you back. But, you must keep moving forward.

* How you value yourself is a direct reflection of how you are getting paid.

* If you believe that you can’t have a certain future because of your past, YOU NEED TO STOP EMPOWERING THE PAST.

Empowered Emotional State:

* If you are in an empowered emotional state, you have certainty, confidence, conviction and value.

* If you are in a disempowered emotional state, you are overwhelmed with uncertainty and fear and you are lacking self-value.

* You cannot attract work, clients, money, or abundance if you are in a disempowered state.

* If you are working in a disempowered state, you are going to disempower your clients! If you feel this way, you need to acknowledge it before going into your session with your client.

* Take control of the situation. Turn it around to empowerment! Give love and compassion to the person who is about to walk into the room.

* The most empowered state is to give service.

* When you empower others, you will feel an instant shift inside you!

* Remember, feelings stay in our body for 90 seconds unless we continue to tell a story around it. So if someone hurts you, wrongs you, criticizes you, you have 90 seconds to feel it and then you need to manage the state in which you are dwelling.

What Do You Want?:

* When Sue (or anyone) asks you what you want, don’t tell her what you think she wants to hear. And don’t say, “I don’t know”. YOU KNOW WHAT YOU WANT!

* If you are someone who declares what you want and goes after it, you are going to be more successful. You must go after what you want! Yes, there will be pain along the way, but there will be even more pain if you spend your whole life yearning for what you could have had.

* We spend more time over nurturing others and not nurturing ourselves.

* Write down your goals. Make them realistic and actionable and walk towards them every day. Read them every single day and empower them with excitement and enthusiasm. Every. Single. Day.

* Don’t get stuck on the “how”!

* If you say you don’t know what you want, you either don’t believe you can have it or you don’t know how to get it.

The Wheel of Misfortune:

* Sue doesn’t believe so much in manifestation, but in fully in taking action — saying you want something and taking action towards it — as the way to get things, to make things happen, to achieve your goals.

* But, you must be careful and clear with what you ask for. Your energy is being infused in everything you say out loud, what you are doing, what you are being. If you are unclear, the Universe or God or whatever you believe in, gets confused about what you REALLY want.

* WHAT YOU HAVE IS WHAT YOU WANT! BECAUSE THAT’S WHAT YOU ARE DOING! You are getting something out of whatever situation you are in that you are saying you don’t want. You just have to pay attention to the lesson!

* The Wheel of Misfortune to teach you how what is happening with you internally is a direct reflection of your money issues!

* The Wheel of Misfortune = Avoidance, Overspending, Overgiving, Guilt & Shame, Resentment, No Boundaries, Not Receiving, Tight Fistedness

* Money will stay with those who value it most. If you avoid it and don’t pay attention to it, it’s gone.

* We avoid facing our money issues because we don’t want the pain of fronting up to what we are doing. But, the truth is, you will get hit with even more pain because you end up overspending, letting someone else manage your money, over giving, not managing it, not saving it, and then you are in debt and the money runs out and you are in a serious amount of pain — much more pain that if you had taken action to face what you were doing in the first place!

* You might be repelling money because of guilt and shame of receiving money.

* You might have so much difficulty receiving money because you don’t believe you deserve it.

* You must figure out your money leak to change your money situation!

No More, No Less:

* The Rule of Cosmic Ordering is: You will receive no more and no less than what you ask for and what you action every day.

* So whatever you are experiencing, you are somehow asking for it. This is the truth!!

* Reset what you think you want because you will get NO MORE AND NO LESS than what you want!

Your Body & Stop Eating Your Pain:

* When Sue was very overweight and her gallbladder had collapsed, she kept repeating to herself over and over “go on a diet, go on a diet, go on a diet”. When, in reality, it had nothing to do with food. It had everything to do with what she was holding onto.

* Your body is a clear representation of what you are holding onto. If you don’t value yourself, it doesn’t matter if you are slimmer or younger or prettier. You will continue to attract what you have now no matter what your body looks like! You must change your own self value and self love to change anything else!

* This goes the same with business and relationships and everything else. Until you change your own self value, nothing else will change!

* Your problem is not what you’re eating, your problem is how you’re feeling and what you’re not dealing with. Your problem is your pain.

* You must separate the calories from your pain.

* You need to go back to the root of the emotion!

Exist in Photographs:

* You know how Sue feels about existing in photographs. She wants to teach the world that you must exist in photographs not hide behind them because you don’t feel good enough to be in them.

* If you die tomorrow, your family are going to look for photographs of you and what are they going to find?

* You need to accept yourself and who you are NOW!

Emotion = Energy in Motion:

* Emotion is Energy in Motion. So when energy becomes trapped, it becomes weight, illness, or pain.

* As soon as you can shift it and not trap it, IT CHANGES EVERYTHING.

27th May 2014

Perhaps the biggest tragedy of our lives is that freedom is possible, yet we can pass our years trapped in the same old patterns…We may want to love other people without holding back, to feel authentic, to breathe in the beauty around us, to dance and sing. Yet each day we listen to inner voices that keep our life small.

27th May 2014

We tend to be particularly unaware that we are thinking virtually all the time. The incessant stream of thoughts flowing through our minds leaves us very little respite for inner quiet. And we leave precious little room for ourselves anyway just to be, without having to run around doing things all the time. Our actions are all too frequently driven rather than undertaken in awareness, driven by those perfectly ordinary thoughts and impulses that run through the mind like a coursing river, if not a waterfall. We get caught up in the torrent and it winds up submerging our lives as it carries us to places we may not wish to go and may not even realize we are headed for. Meditation means learning how to get out of this current, sit by its bank and listen to it, learn from it, and then use its energies to guide us rather than to tyrannize us.

Why losing someone to suicide complicates grief

Why Losing a Loved One to Suicide Complicates Grief

Suicide is unfortunately so common that everyone knows someone who has committed suicide. From the classmate who hung himself just six weeks before high school graduation to the widow who found her husband in their bedroom to the man who’s father shot himself and left him the head of the family when he was a teenager, there are so many ways that suicide leaves a trail of chaos and pain in its wake.

The sudden death of any loved one is difficult but there are several reasons why losing someone to suicide is especially hard. Studies confirm that a close relationship with a victim of suicide can lead to complicated grief and post-traumatic stress disorder.

An article in Harvard Women’s Health Watch does a nice job of outlining several of the particular dimensions that challenge survivors of suicide:

Complicated aftermath

Not to be indelicate, but the death scene can be messy. And sometimes it’s in the survivor’s home. And sometimes there are legal and financial ramifications to deal with.


Historically, suicide was something people didn’t talk about. And it’s really hard to get support for something you can’t tell anyone. Shame festers in secret. Also, when members of our community, which could be work or church or school or neighborhood respond badly to the suicide, it can impede the survivor’s recovery.

Mixed emotions toward the victim

It’s completely normal to have complicated feelings toward the victim. When we lose someone to cancer or illness, we grieve, but we also feel pretty confident that, given the choice, they’d still want to be with us. If we are close to someone who is murdered or killed by someone else’s negligence, we know the above, and we also have someone we can be angry with. Losing someone to suicide is a double blow. This person chose to leave us and the world behind and it’s natural to feel angry with that person. There is also the loss and grief of losing a loved one.

What if’s and guilt

It’s very natural to search your memory for signs you may have missed, to wonder what you could have said and done differently. It’s natural to feel like you did something wrong or didn’t do something right, that somehow you could have prevented this from happening.

What can help?

Support groups can be helpful. Here is a resource to help you find one near you, and the website it’s on provides a lot of other good resources.

If you feel you need professional support, you can find a therapist who specializes in grief or trauma.

There are also hotlines dedicated to helping people in crisis.

from After Trauma