As of Thursday, November 16, 2017
To the editor:
It is a complicated grief – that which is borne by those who lost a loved one to suicide. Stuffed inside, in silence or denial, is often where this grief resides.
Despite an increasing number of grief support groups showing up, there is still reason for a special day dedicated to the survivors of suicide loss held annually the Saturday before Thanksgiving. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (afsp.org) provides a DVD that features a diverse group of individuals who have lost a family member to suicide. Through conversations it reveals how each has managed through a variety of emotions and personal struggles.
There can be comfort found in hearing how others have coped with this grief and an opportunity to share with people locally in a supportive environment. One out of six people have such a tragedy in their personal history; if not a family member, then possibly a friend, neighbor, co-worker, or former classmate. Whether it has been only a few precious months, several years, or decades since the suicide, everyone is welcome and anyone could benefit from this two-hour program on Nov. 18, 2017.
This year, in addition to the morning program, conducted in English, 10 to noon at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital, there will be an afternoon program in Spanish held 3 to 5 p.m. at the WyEast Middle School Library. If you have been harboring your grief alone, or know someone who is, please consider this invitation. I will be there to meet you!