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No idea how to deal with this. Any similar experiences?

Anonymous
Posted by Anonymous
  • 4 Replies

I found out Friday night that my younger brother tried to take his own life.

I was the only one that even know he was struggling with depression; he had told me the week before that he was on medication for it and dealing with it, which was a surprise to me because he's hidden it so well for all these years (it's apparently been going on for as many as 7-10 years, and nobody ever had a clue), and he said that the medicine was helping and he was doing well. I encouraged him to talk to our parents about it and that they (and I) would always be there and would do whatever we could to help. I assume this encouragement came too late, and since I had promised him that anything he said to me (within obvious reason) would remain between us, everyone else was even more stunned than I was.

I packed up, sent my kids to grandma and grandpa's, and drove down first thing the next morning. I've spent some time with him every day this weekend and I'm the only person he's really opened up to, because I told him about how I've felt everything he's feeling and I've been to that dark place that he's in now. When I shared some of my uglier experiences, he began to share some of his.

But now, he's told me some things that I can't share with anyone; not our parents or siblings, not his wife, not anyone, because I promised and that trust means everything to me. And one of the things he told me is in regards to his marriage, so now I'm carrying this weight around, knowing what has happened and that it's killing him inside. When I had to come back home today, I felt sick leaving him like this... he's in a top-notch mental health facility for a few more days and on suicide watch, but all I can think is how he asked us all to go home this afternoon, saying that he just needed to be alone.

Given what he told me today (about something that happened last night that he's feeling so terrible over), I worry that he's just taken a giant step backward and he's in a place where nobody can help unless he talks about it, and yet he's afraid to talk about it to anyone but me... and I'm not there.

I am utterly lost. I could have been at a funeral instead of a psych facility, and now that I'm not there and I can't hug him and listen to him and support him, I'm terrified of getting "that" phone call.


How do you deal with something like this? Obviously I can't deal with it FOR him, but I can barely process it and deal with it myself. I would give anything on the planet to take this all away for him, and I'm just fucking petrified that any day now, my family will call with the worst news imaginable. Has anyone been through this with a loved one? I hope to God nobody has, but it happens, so maybe someone can share their experience and how they coped, or maybe even helped?

Posted by Anonymous on Jul. 27, 2014 at 6:21 PM
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Anonymous
by Anonymous 2 on Jul. 27, 2014 at 6:57 PM
1 mom liked this

First of all, I'm so sorry. Second of all, you can only do so much, it's not your job to save him. Listen to him when he wants to talk but it's up to him to decide to take further steps to heal himself. ALl you can do is be an ear for him, and to encourage him to seek atherapist to talk to. Let him know it's confidential, they're not allowed to blab his business either, and that it can really help. It's difficult to know and believe that it can get better when you're so low and life is so dark but that's all you can do. Be as supportive as you can, and keep encouraging him to get the help he needs. All you can do is be a good sister, you can't be his therapist. Hugs to you both, I had a family member die of suicide so I know where you are. The hardest thing to grasp was that it is up to him to take the next step, you can't make someone open up to someone else and take the next step in recovery, they have to do that ontheir own. All you can do is be there, be supportive, listen if you can, and just encourage him to get more help.  Hugs, hugs, hugs.

Oh, and I ETA that I would recommend getting your own therapist so you have someone you can unload this all to and who can help you find ways to emotionally deal with this situation.  It is very difficult to carry around a whole lot of heavy information and all of the worry, alone. 

PogoPalOj
by on Jul. 27, 2014 at 9:22 PM

 You can't do anything.  Please stop letting him put all this trash on you.  He needs to talk to his doctors, not you.  Tell him you love him, but he needs professional help.  Not you at his bedside.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Jul. 29, 2014 at 2:55 PM

I know he needs professional help. HE knows he needs professional help. But it's not "trash". He's my brother and anything that hurts him is not fucking trash. A professional is there to do a job. As is sister, I'm there to support him in ANY way I can. So thanks for your useless reply, but no thanks.

Quoting PogoPalOj:

 You can't do anything.  Please stop letting him put all this trash on you.  He needs to talk to his doctors, not you.  Tell him you love him, but he needs professional help.  Not you at his bedside.


PogoPalOj
by on Jul. 29, 2014 at 2:58 PM

 I wasn't trying to insult your brother.  Check our what co dependency is Hon.  Feel better soon.

Quoting Anonymous:

I know he needs professional help. HE knows he needs professional help. But it's not "trash". He's my brother and anything that hurts him is not fucking trash. A professional is there to do a job. As is sister, I'm there to support him in ANY way I can. So thanks for your useless reply, but no thanks.

Quoting PogoPalOj:

 You can't do anything.  Please stop letting him put all this trash on you.  He needs to talk to his doctors, not you.  Tell him you love him, but he needs professional help.  Not you at his bedside.

 

 

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