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my mum killed herself...

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i am 17 years old and last year my mum commited suicide. i am finding it hard to cope and cut on a daily basis. i want to stop but i am stuggling with lots of other things in my life that are making it impossible to focus on stopping. i get images in my head of my mum burning (she set herslf on fire) and i dream about her all the time. i had alot of problems with my mum when she was alive as she was mentally ill and was an alcoholic but i now feel guilty for not helping her enough to be able to let her know that i was there for her. i cant stop thinking that it is my fault that she is dead and i feel really bad for my little sister who is now in foster care. i visit my sister once a month and she asked me things about our mum. i dont know what to say to her as it just upsets me. i have a psychiatrist, psychotherapist and i go to anger management sessions . i am also on medication but nothing seems to be helping me. i have also recently started to see people around me burst into flames which sends me into a panic attack. my teachers at college know of my problems and support me but i feel that i am letting everyone down.


please help, i dont know what to do. is this normal for someone who is grieving or am i just crazy?

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wow thats a hell of a lot for you to deal with. im really sorry that you are having to go through this.


it is totally not your fault that your mother is no longer with us. as you said she was mentally ill, and people who are mentally ill can do unpredictable things. and i guess that was just one of them. you were not to know that she was going to do what she did.


how old is your sister? she would be finding it really hard as well, you have to understand that not only has she lost her mum, she has been put in a different environment with a strange family, and most likely doesnt know anyone around her. so of corse she is going to turn to you, to talk to about your mum.


it is great that you are getting help, it is going to take a looooonnnnngggg time before everything is normal again. i wouldnt say what you are going through is normal, because everyone grieves differently, and its also your mind trying to work things out.


i really hope that everything works out for you, and please pm me at any time if you want to chat, i cant totally understand if you need someone to talk too, and im am here for you the whole time. because this is going to be really hard for you.... but i want to say again, it was not your fault what happened to your mum.


please stay safe



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Hello Steff


Before I ramble on and on, I just want to tell you NOT TO FEEL GUILTY. Whatever her problems, whether obvious or not, she killed herself through her own free will. But because of your relationship with her, and the fact that she's gone without answering the questions that are coming up, you assume that you have had a part in in. You have not.


I too felt that I had played a part in my father's suicide. He killed himself about 4 years ago, just a month after I'd got married (felt that the small debt he'd incurred contributed -- in reality it didn't). He actually was missing for six months (drowned himself and there was a tremendous amount of upheaval and money problems as we had to pay a mortgage for my mother when my father was actually dead. I am an only child, and had a very close, but very formal, relationship with my father, who had anger problems throughout his life.


The last conversation I'd had with my father was a bad one. I'd got pregnant and couldn't have the baby. So I told him I was going to have an abortion. He didn't go mental at me, but I could tell he was gutted.


So for several years I thought that all the pressure of me having made attempts on my life while at university, him feeling awful about me getting raped when I lived in Russia, the debt, then the abortion -- on top of all his other problems -- got too much for him. But really that's not how it happens. For one thing, he'd just started to take a large dose of Prozac -- maybe that triggered something. Who knows.


It will always remain a mystery to you why she did what she did. You may had both good and bad memories of her, but I think of it like an illness that killed my father earlier than most men die. I also think it is ultimately his right to do what he did (although it made me very angry).


It will get easier. You get stronger facing the weak people who view mental ilness is a stigma, you learn what's really really important and you discover who your friends are.


But it is tough, I can't lie. My thoughts are with you. Please email me if you want to talk.



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I could not imagine going through what you've been through. Hugs to you, sweetie, and you must know -you are VERY STRONG person!



is this normal for someone who is grieving or am i just crazy?


I think your reaction to this devastating tragedy is quite normal. What you should work on the most though is to try to stop cutting yourself- because inflicting physical pain is not going to help you cope with the emotional pain in any way.


You also have to stop self-blaming. You were just a child. This was not your fault in any way. Sometimes no matter how much people try to help, if someone is in a very dark place emotionally and wants to die- there's not much you can do to change their minds, especially if they have a chemical imbalance/mental illnes.


It's good that you are in therapy, and that you're in college trying make good in your life.. You're doing the right thing. It's also good that you are visiting your sister and being strong for your sister.


Everything is going to be ok. You will never forget your mom- but you don't have to suffer inside like she did. You can change your life around (and it seems like you're taking the right steps to do that). Take care of yourself, and try to think of the positive things in your life. Stay close you your sister- the 2 of you will need each other.


I know you'll get through this, I can tell you have a strong spirit,



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Hi estelle,


Yeah, that's a lot you had to go through. In my experience with people committing suicide, once they make up their minds, there is not much you can do to change it, and they quite often don't tell anyone. Nothing that you did would have had any impact on her doing that, so do not continue to blame yourself. Your mum would not want to see you in pain.

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Sorry to hear about your loss. Any guilt you feel is completely 100% normal given your situation. I've known a few people who have taken their own lives and even though they weren't family, I felt guilty too for not having said something to them.


The good news is that I think you're already on the right path. You're aware that cutting is something you want to stop doing and you've taken the first step which is being aware of this negative behavior.


Don't think you're letting anyone down. You've encountered a traumatic situation and your brain is trying to adjust to what happened and you're trying to live your life.


Meanwhile, keep going to therapy and stay close with your sister. If you can't visit her more often then call her often. Also, if it helps you might consider keeping a journal of everything on your mind. Hang in there.

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Our minds are powerful in many senses. In the quote by Lieberman, it's used in a sense that your mind (brain) is the most useful thing about you. It is so powerful that you could not function without it. In fact, it's necessary.


Your thoughts control your emotions and vice versa - this is what probably leads people to suicide. They get an idea in their head, they think about everything in their life that supports that idea, then they pursue that idea and turn it into reality. Unfortunately, most people who commit suicide really don't have a grasp on reality. At that point, they figure that everything and everyone revolves around them and turn 100% selfish. This is why suicide is the most selfish act one can commit.

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i would firstly like to thank everyone for their support. steff, my little sister is 8 years old. she does not know the details of my mum's death, just that she is gone. i think that makes it easier for her to deal with. i visited her over the weekend and she told me that she wanted to live with me and would do anything to have mum back. this upset me but i didn't show that to her. should i show her that i miss her too and that it is ok to be upset or would this not be good for her. i want to be strong for her but i am worried that, although she talks about missing her, she has not actually gotten upset or cried yet. what can i do to help Bobbie (my sis) through this???


thanks again to everyone that replied to my message

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  • 2 weeks later...

I don't know, that's tough. If i were you, i would be strong for her and see if she gets upset and let her get upset. In my humble opinion, she is not old enough to see you get upset. I know this is unfair, but children her age are not as apt at dealing with emotions as people older or your age. That doesn't mean to say you shouldn't get upset or don't have the right to, because you have every right to grieve too and probably need to. It just means that you shouldn't let her see you get upset right now. In my humble opinion, perhaps you can talk to someone older or see a counsellor to get some support on this issue.

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i kinda know what your going through. my dad commited suicide about a month ago. he shot himself in the chest over his brothers grave. its been the hardest year of my life. and its only february. like you do, i picture my dad killing himself alot and it makes me cry. my dad was such a well known person in our town, and my family had many connections. we held a memorial service for him and over 800 people attended. when people told me 13 is a tough age, they werent kidding

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I am so sorry about this. I think what you are going through is post traumatic stress, and I can understand why.


I really wish that I was a trained therapist so I could prescribe some remedy that would help you stop cutting...But I can't.


I just hope you can find alternative ways to release your anger, sadness, and frustration. I think, inwardly, you might be blaming yourself for your mother...hence cutting yourself as penance.


I hope things work out for you.

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hey id just like to say sorry for ur lose. My mum had a drink problem, she died when i was 12 im 17 now. As time goes by it gets easyer but.. i find it really hard when her birthday, mothers day, and the day she died on.


I think when your sister is older you should tell her and just be there for her when she needs you. Just think off the good times you had with your mum and tell your sister about them.


I dont believe in god but.. i believe our loved ones are up looking down on us. Do want i done and pick the bigest star in the sky and thats your mum watching over you, dont blame yourself for what happened.


all the best





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  • 1 year later...

Hi estelle. I'm sorry to hear about your mum. I hope I am not too late replying. I am 12 years old, and the same thin g happened to me when I was 7. I also see people burst into flames! I was talking to my friend today, and she was sayimg how she passed her music exam, and I saw her eburst intto flames and started crying. It was so embarrassing. Thankfully she understood. I haven't been to any kind of help: my dad won't let me talk about it. Hope this helps. Bombay

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I can't imagine what you're going through Estelle. I'm very sorry to hear and hope every bit of happiness and support will come to you. It's ok to cry and think of your mom but don't blame yourself. Like others have said the last thing you mom would want is for you to hurt yourself. I wish I can say I've been there to feel what you're feeling but we're all here for you.

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Well- suffice it to say, there's not a lot a 15 or 16 year old CAN do in the way of helping an adult with psychiatric and alcohol related problems.


A very close friend of mine's mother committed suicide whilst he was still in High School. It's very traumatising. I stronlgy suggest you seek counseling. Just to get a handle on some of what you're experiencing, what to expect of what may come and finally, how to help your little sister.


My sincerest condolences.....


please see some one -

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Hi Estelle,I understand what you are going through. My husband committed suicide a few years back, alcohol related. And trust me there was nothing you could have done to change what happened. It simply was not in your power. As for the cutting, I get it... it helps ease the mental pain. Been there too. The truth is you are punishing yourself, and there is no need to do that hon. Not to mention how dangerous it becomes, get help to stop quickly.


When my husband died, people suddenly did not want to talk about him, making me feel like they wanted to forget he had even been there at all. For the first year I thought I was going crazy. I would smell his cologne everywhere, and since I had moved to a new house it made no sense. Dreams were everynight, some nice others horrible. Eventually I learned it was my subconscious dealing with everything I had been hit with. It is perfectly normal to have the feelings you are having, have no doubt about that.

And letting your sister know you miss mum too is good for her, as well as for you.She needs reassurance that somewhere there is something familiar for her and you are it. If she needs to cry, hold her and cry with her, it's ok. We all need to remember feelings are what they are and it is ok to show them. To bottle them up hurts the body, mind and soul.The two of you are each others connection to the life you knew, and also now have. It's different and scary, but knowing the other is there helps more than words can ever say.

So hon, please, get help to stop the cutting, check into grief counseling, and live each day moment to moment. You can, and will, get through this. PM me anytime you want to, I will always be available to lend you an ear, shoulder, tissue , whatever I can do to help. Keep posting and update all of us, ok?

Good luck, and keep your faith.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Estelle, im so sorry for your troubles. life is filled with tragedies, disappointment and hurt. but please please know that it is also filled with love, light and healing. take care of yourself and your sister. keep her close to you, she needs you and YOU need YOU too. be strong. there are going to be many challenges in the process of healing, but i believe that if you have faith you will survive. be your OWN best friend and continue with all the help you are receiving. Healing is a process and won't come very quickly. you are a very strong 17 year old. you are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  • 1 month later...

wow... I am honesly very sorry to hear your loss... I am in the same boat as you.. My mom wanted to kill herself and she too is an alcoholic.. I havent lost her yet.. she has given up on hope because she has recently divorced a very abusive husband and father... All I can tell you is... PLEASE dont blame yorself, there is nothing you could do even if you wanted to I hope that somday you will realize that.. You have a very strong heart and I hope you youself will not give up hope because it does get better, if you can get past the pain and everything else, there is a better life out there and I hope that you dont base your life around that ( Im not telling you to forget about your mother but to let her rest in peace)

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  • 5 months later...

I am so sorry for what you are going through. Please get the book, "Your Medication May Be Your Problem" by Dr. Peter Breggin. It will help you understand your mom, yourself and what the psychiatric drugs can do to you. It may have been the drug that "took over" your mothers mental state. It has happened to thousands of people.

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  • 11 months later...

hi estelle


i'm so sorry 2 hear about your loss i know exactly what your going through it's hard very hard i lost my father when i was 15yrs through suicide he took alot of pills and gases himself in his car. the way ur feeling is not madness i felt it 2. anger sad sometimes very selfish then i just get days when i wish i could c him just once more. or sometimes i thought i seen him walking down the street or just wish it was him. and when he passes over we wasn't getting on and i have regreats i blamed myself. and fell into bad depression and was on tablets 8yrs has gone by now and i would just say it has got alot easier. u have 2 move on but never 4get who they were my father will live on in my heart and ur mum will 2. all the best in the future xx

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Dear Estelle:


My heart goes out to you for your suffering of the loss of your mum. Just remember, it definitely was not your fault. Just like you, I too, have lost people I deeply loved to suicide and spent years blaming myself. Please don't do that to yourself. As hard as it may seem to you now, you will survive.


I lost two people I loved with all my heart and soul to suicide and I was there when it happened. Although it has been a long hard struggle, my belief in the Lord and finding a new belief in myself, I have chosen to move on. Each and everyday, I try my best to live in the moment. Believe me, there are times, I feel so lost, but I always find my way back. My life has changed since the loss of these two beloved people, as I have an emptiness that has left scars in my heart.


Whatever you do, always believe in yourself and once again, never ever blame yourself as I did. All that does is waste precious time. We just have now. So please Estelle, be strong for your sister and most importantly for yourself!!!! G-D be with you always................

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