A Family Loses a Son

A young man points a gun to his head and pulls the trigger.

Another tragedy strikes a New Zealand family.

The hand of suicide reaches into their very soul and heart.

They will never be the same again.

This family were always close, but without living in each other’s pockets.

How were they to deal with this situation?

Initially some family members isolated themselves, perhaps to try to come to grips with what had happened, or to escape the nightmare. One of the siblings just completely lost the plot. He took off, went missing for the whole day and nobody knew where he was.

The family started coming together again, seeking comfort in each other.

Years have gone by since the death of this young man, but he is still very much a part of the family.

They find it extremely difficult to talk about him without being affected by raw grief. Especially around his birthday and Christmas, but all family members visit his memorial regularly.

The family has remained close. It has neither become weaker nor stronger, but it has survived the raging, dark storm that threatened to destroy them.

These are the things the family found helpful:

· People being sensitive and sensible around them.

· Offering a hand on the shoulder on days when grief overwhelms you.

These are the things the family DIDN’T find helpful

· People asking lots of questions just to be nosey.

· No contact from Victim Support

· People coming to the family, with their heavy burden of grief, as if to expect the family to comfort them.

The family would like to see the Government provide free counselling services for families affected by suicide.