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Suicide survivors are not alone

Nov. 17 is Survivors of Suicide Day. For those of us who have lived in the aftermath of suicide for several years, it’s a day to remember with love and affection friends and family members who’ve died by suicide.
It’s also a day for us to celebrate that we made it through an unimaginable tragedy few can appreciate.
We are survivors.
For those whose experience with suicide is more recent, it can be a difficult day. Emotions are fragile and may express themselves without warning. But take heart, you’ll get through this day and the many others to follow.
You will be able to talk about your loved one more freely and more naturally. You will laugh and enjoy life again; however, it will never be the same. Others may display discomfort when you talk about your loved one’s life and death. That’s their problem, not yours.
Mental health agencies in some communities are holding events to recognize Survivors of Suicide Day. You may want to contact them to see what is happening. You may want to attend, because it’s comforting to be with others who truly understand the devastating impact and tragedy of suicide. If you can’t participate, it’s nice to know others care. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention website  lists events you can watch online. You are not alone.
Ross Irvine   Guelph

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