A school friend took her own life a few days ago. I can't understand it. We hadn't spoken in over ten or twelve as I'd moved away and we'd lost touch. She was outgoing and charming and a social butterfly and I can't actually comprehend she's done this, actually taken her own life.
I feel like fraud because I am so upset. I had only thought of her a few times in all these years. I just can't actually equate the person I know with suicide. From the Facebook group set up to celebrate her life, she has many, many close friends who are devastated. We had been best friends as teenagers but I was 20 the last time I saw her and we hadn't been close for a while before that.
I just - I just can't actually believe she was in such an awful, lonely place. I don't know how this happened and I don't want to pry and intrude on the people grieving for her now. I suppose I am grieving her too but I am not part of the wider circle to ask those kinda of questions. I want to ask - did anyone think this would happen, did you know she was so depressed, could have ever have guessed this would happen?
You are not a fraud. If you were a fraud, you'd be feeling nothing while posting on that FB page about how devastated you are and awful it all is. You cannot be a fraud for having a genuine emotional response to a tragedy, no matter how displaced you are from it.
Aside from the personal tragedy that you are feeling empathy for, when someone close to us dies, especially when they're the same age, it's natural for us to look at our own mortality, and that's scary too.
You're right that it would be inappropriate to ask those questions of those close to her, though it's quite natural to want to know.
Be kind to yourself, let yourself feel. I'm sorry for your loss.
Grief can hit anyone, at any time, and if your suffering, your not a fraud. More like mourning what was, and what might have been in the future - there is nothing to say your lives might have got closer again.
I think your right - at this moment, it probably isn't quite the time to start asking questions, but if you stay in contact with those who have been close to her more recently, the opportunity may well come up in the next weeks or months.
Thank you for replying and your kind words. I don't think I would ever ask those questions - it's been too long, I've been out of that circle of friends for too long up intrude upon their grief in that way. But the questions churn over and over in my mind nevertheless. I don't know what good it would do knowing but I suppose that's part of it, desperately wanting to understand because it's so shocking to me that someone would take their own life. I know. I know that selfish. I know it happens all the time for so many people. I know intellectually people feel compelled to. But with my friend...In just finding it so shocking that she actually has.
My sister took her own life last October and I still can't believe it, or understand it. It's very hard. Don't feel like a fraud though, you are entitled to feel whatever emotions you feel. And losing someone like this is a huge shock.