Losing a Friend

Photo by Ellie Burgin on Pexels.com

I lost a friend this week. It was the second time I learned of someone’s passing via Facebook – the first being the passing of my stepfather 9 years ago. I was mindlessly scrolling through my feed on Facebook Wednesday evening when a post popped up with the letters RIP.

I didn’t want to believe it at first. It can’t be…

“Is this true?” I asked my mom. She and my friend’s mother are good friends. “I…I think my friend is dead.”

My mother was just as confused as I was. As I continued scrolling down the feed, I began to learn more about my friend, who I last saw on Christmas Eve 2018 when she and her family were passing through Salt Lake City. She was the first friend I made when I moved to Utah 15 years ago. She was a few years younger than me but she was mature for her age, perhaps more mature than I was at the time. Our mothers met shopping at the dollar store when her mom heard my mom was speaking to me in our native dialect, which has become a rarity as the years passed.

From the Facebook posts, I learned she had been suffering from anxiety, depression, and insomnia. I was in shock by the news. It didn’t sound right. That did not sound like the friend I knew. The friend I knew was mentally strong, perhaps the strongest person I’ve known. Even when I talked to her back in 2018, I didn’t get the sense she was struggling with her mental health. I guess mental disorders can be deceptive.

Yesterday, I learned she took her life. She lost her battle against her mental illnesses. I wished it wasn’t true. Unfortunately, it was. Her death opened my eyes to how destructive mental illnesses can be to a person. My friend’s decision and action made my battle with my own inner demons seem so…trivial.

I’m sure it provided clarity for my mom, too. I decided to confess about my battle with anxiety and had gone through 7 therapy sessions in the last few months to help me get a better handle on things. I didn’t tell her the reason was because of her. I’m not there yet and probably never will be.

She responded, “You cannot commit suicide, ever. It’s the stupidest way to die. God hates people taking their life. He created us for a reason. Those who takes their life will be punished.”

I don’t think, even in my darkest hour, have ever thought about taking my own life. I’ve thought about running away but never taking my own life. I assured her I won’t be doing such thing. As interesting as death is to me, I am interesting in living more.

I am writing this post to release the words that have been stuck on repeat for the last two days so I can move on instead of letting the thoughts consume me. My friend’s death hit me hard, harder than all the other deaths I’ve encountered throughout my life so far, even harder than the death of my dad and stepdad. She was far too young to do such thing with far too many potentials that now have to be forfeited. She was the first person I’ve lost due to mental illnesses and most likely won’t be the last. I will miss her and hope she is now in a better place.

33 thoughts on “Losing a Friend

  1. It is shocking to learn of a friend’s passing this way. Taking one’s own life is a desperate act and leaves deep scars on the family and friend’s hearts and souls. I’m glad you’ve shared here. I hope you find some peace. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I haven’t been able to sleep these last few days, especially after learning how my friend took her own life, each time I shut my eyes, my imagination would go wild and all I could imagine was seeing her body. I’ve been trying, listening to nature sounds and sleep stories. I hope this will pass soon.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, there is and will always be some level of anxiety. I take herbal supplement to help me cope with the stress and anxiety of everyday life. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it doesn’t but often, I choose to take life one step at a time, which, in a way, is what life is about – one step at a time.


  2. This is a very important post, for you and for others. Perhaps some suicidal person will seek you out because they know you know “the rest of the story.” Life is too important. May you receive comfort from the Lord in this tragic time.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So sad. Wishing you some peace of mind. I don’t think your mother is right. God being God probably doesn’t hate anyone, even those who take their own lives. I would suspect He/She/They actually has an extra does of compassion for that soul. xoxo

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Hugs, I am so sorry about your friend. A psychologist said that when people are suicidal, PART of them has to “die” or change, but he said, “Let’s protect the rest of you while we figure out what change is needed.” I think sometimes people are at the point where they lose sight of the ability to change. Sending love.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can’t bring myself to click “like”… But thank you for sharing this, it couldn’t have been easy to put it into words… All I can say is, stay strong – do whatever you need to stay strong and take care of yourself…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend. Suicide leaves those behind feeling guilty and confused. It’s a hard thing to comprehend. A painful thing.

    I’m glad it opened the window for you to talk to your mom about your struggles. Don’t listen to her about the religious side of suicide, and don’t automatically assume your friend’s spirit is doomed. Pray for them and continue to get help. I’m sending you a giant hug.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sorry for the loss of your friend – I have lost friends to suicide as well. It is very shocking and hard. I also feel you very deeply when you say you struggle with anxiety, depression, etc., but have never thought of taking your life. I am the same. I am often fascinated by death and wonder if all this will go away then. But never thought to take my own life. Give yourself time to heal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think my mind was probably too busy dealing with anxiety that there’s no room to think about killing myself. I have spent the weekend sleeping and I think after much sleep, I am feeling so much better.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I lost a friend to suicide too. I can only imagine what you are going through. Everybody grieves in their way. If you learn from the deceased’s life I think that is the greatest respect you can pay to that person.


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