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Author Topic: Dealing with a friend's death  (Read 320 times)

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Offline BeeDot

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Dealing with a friend's death
« on: March 26, 2014, 06:22:54 PM »
This post might be wildly inappropriate here and if it is, I apologise.  I have just found such a supportive community here and don't know where to turn.

My friend died back in November.  His family withheld the cause of death.  I just found out last week that he hung himself in his garage.  I am devastated.  But, many people expect me to have moved on already because he died months ago.  But this feels like he has died all over again.  If you asked me what was wrong, I would probably say that my friend died last week even though really it's been much longer.  It was shocking back in November, but I "moved on" fairly quickly.  I'm pretty sure I just shoved everything aside and thought I dealt with it.  Now however, I'm going through a whole slew of emotions and I think about it all the time and I hate walking into a dark room because I"m afraid I'm going to see him hanging there (irrational, I know).  I have this near-constant need to talk about it with someone, but I hate burdening people and putting them in the awkward position of hearing/talking about a self-inflicted death 

I guess I"m just reaching out to see if anyone has experienced anything similar?  I've received many hurtful comments about how "he was ONLY a friend, not a family member so you shouldn't be this sad", or "you don't even live in the same place anymore so surely you guys weren't that close" and things of the like.  If you have lost a family member in this way, I am deeply sorry for your loss and I know that I have no idea what you are going through, but hopefully this good community will respect the fact that I'm still hurting, even if it's in a different way because I haven't found a place to grieve yet and I can feel it all welling up inside of me.
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For peace of mind, resign as general manager of the universe.  -Author Unknown

Offline Cuchculan

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Re: Dealing with a friend's death
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2014, 07:04:53 AM »
Grief has no time limit at all. You have to do things in your time at your own pace. I did lose a close friend at 21 in a car crash. It was the first such death I experienced. I was lost. It was like the world around me had just fell apart. But after you cry all of those tears you do have to begin to live again. I know it would still hurt. But you can't be expected to stay as you are forever. I think the thing is accepting his death. One thing I found that really helped me was Buddhism. I am not going to preach to you. Don't worry about that. But they are raised to know that death comes with life. I remember reading a great story of woman who lost her baby in Larsa. The capital of Tibet. She begged people to help her out. But nobody done a thing. Then a monk approached her. Said he would bring her baby back if she could go to a house that has experienced death and get a single grain of salt. She was happy. Off she went knocking on doors. But each house has some family member who died. She finally copped on what she was been thought by the monk. Began to accept what had happened. I just found it a nice little story. That we all experience death at some point in our lives.

Now you could write out how you are feeling. As if you are writing your friend a letter. Once done bring it outside and burn it. Set all those emotions free. I know I came to accept to my friend's death. That does not mean I ever forgot him. I still think of him a lot. It is all about been able to say ' I loved you as a friend and I accept you have died and I allow you to move on '. As in move on, on the other side. He will always be with you in memory. That side of things will never change. Come the age of 34 I lost a second close friend. I was able to handle this one a lot better. I learned from the first one. Few books worth reading. Dead Happy is one. Then The Tibetan book of Living and Dying. Two excellent books. Both actually talk about after death. When the person has died what happens to them. That is what makes them both good. Just take your time with things. Do a bit of writing. Get all those emotions and feelings out. Slowly learn how to move on.
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Offline BeeDot

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Re: Dealing with a friend's death
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2014, 02:06:02 PM »
Thank you so much for your thoughtful response.  I will check out those resources. 
Yesterday, I completely broke down and sobbed.  I think I still have a bit more of that to do, but I can feel the process moving forward now.  Before, I just felt so stuck and I like I couldn't completely feel any emotion fully.  it was scary to lean into the loss and really feel the depth of my sorrow, but I suppose that's the only way to move forward.
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For peace of mind, resign as general manager of the universe.  -Author Unknown

Offline radiance_94

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Re: Dealing with a friend's death
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2014, 02:28:40 AM »
Hey BeeDot, I know how you feel. A few weeks ago the body of my best friend's sister was found in the river. She had been missing for 2 months prior to her body being found. We are still not sure how she died (whether is was a ***** or accident). This lack of closure still worries me sometimes. Anyways, after I learned about her death I had a really bad episode of anxiety and depression. During that time I couldn't stop thinking about her body being found in the river and imagining that being my body. I thought alot about death and that scared me. I imagined what it would be like and how my family and friends would react if they found me like that. Then I started asking myself, would I ever end my life like that? And that got me even more scared and depressed. Eventually I opened up to people and shared how I was feeling. That helped alot. Then I slowly began to get over it as I became more occupied with schoolwork and surrounded myself more with people. During times like these it's nice to know that you are loved and that people care about you. It gave me more confidence and trust in myself to not worry so much anymore. I still think about the death sometimes because she was my childhood friend. But I just try to tell myself that when I am faced with tragedies like these and I must remain strong. And then I thank god for being alive.
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Offline BeeDot

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Re: Dealing with a friend's death
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2014, 11:21:03 AM »
Thank you for your kind words Radiance and I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your friend.  Sudden and tragic deaths can be so tricky to deal with, as I am finding out.  I have a hard time reaching out to people because I am just so afraid of depressing them or even frightening them with the sometimes grim nature of my thoughts. 
I'm glad to hear that you are doing better.  I am too, but every now and then a day comes along and I am completely floored by everything all over again.
Wishing you well,
Bee
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For peace of mind, resign as general manager of the universe.  -Author Unknown

Offline AncientMelody

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Re: Dealing with a friend's death
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2014, 10:32:55 AM »
I'm so sorry to hear about this, and yes I imagine self-inflicted death of  a friend can bring a whole new slew of emotions into the situation. Consider looking into grief counseling or a grief support group, you could look online or talk to your doctor about that and they may be able to get you connected to a community resource.

In the meantime there are books to read that could help you process:

Night Falls Fast: Understanding ***** Kay Redfield Jamison
No Time to Say Goodbye Carla Fine
Unfinished Conversation: healing from ***** and loss

Good luck to you, I'm so sorry
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Offline poppadr3w

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Re: Dealing with a friend's death
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2014, 01:37:18 PM »
Hello,

I had a friend pass away around 4 years ago from a heroin overdose. Initially we were told that it was pneumonia, but then someone finally told me the truth. He had been in rehab not too long prior. He lost his license, which made him extremely depressed since he LOVED his car and to drive, and his job involved driving (I think he worked as a parts guy for Toyota). They accomodated him by giving him an administrative job, but it wasn't the same. He fell into the wrong crowd (He had my crowd and this other crowd). It was hard for us to hang out with him, and I felt guilty, because he didn't live far away, but it did get annoying after some time. If I could go back, I'd hang out with him every day and pick him up. He was a great friend and person overall.

I actually responded to the call, but luckily our ambulance ran right off of the bat so they deferred me to a different station as back-up in case another call came out. On the way back from the station I saw that the ambulance was on his road and dwelled further down and saw it was at his house. I went to the door and was met by his Uncle, who was upset and emotional and yelled at me asking who I was. We didn't hang out at his house often, but I told him I was an FD member and a close friend and asked what had happened. He then told me that Kevin had passed away and gave me a large hug. I then talked to a cop that asked if I knew anything about the drugs, to which I didn't.

He is gone too soon, that's for sure. I miss him immensely. I keep his funeral card in my car at all times for protection while I drive. At first I had dreams about him, being happy and stuff, and on occassion I'll dream about him and others that I knew that have passed.

You just need to cope with it head on, talk to a therapist and the surrounding friends in the group. It's a tragic loss, but you must move on, but never forget.
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