Dad took his own life


Dad took his own life


your avatar   Alyssa, 18-year-old woman

My dad just committed suicide 6 months ago and ever since then I've felt lost and depressed. I hate everyone and don't talk to anyone about my feelings that I have inside of me. I don't like where I'm living and I don't feel as though I have a family because since the day my dad died we don't talk or do anything together.

My aunt in a different country had offered me to come live with her and I am wondering whether I should take this opporutunity and leave this country forever...should I stay here and live through this until I move out on my own?


    Jef Gazley, M.S., LMFT, LPC, LISAC, DCC

Hi Alyssa,

I am very sorry to hear about your loss. Losing a parent is one of the most difficult things that can happen to a person. It cuts you off from a basic feeling of connectedness. It devastates you and makes you feel alone on a true existential basis. The death of a parent also forces you to confront your own fragility and mortality. It often takes years to truly get over the loss.

To have a parent commit suicide amplifies these feelings to an incredible degree. It is so out of the realm of what you would expect that the shock lingers even longer than in the case of a normal passing. It forces you to reevaluate almost everything that you took for granted before the event. It would be impossible to not feel isolated, depressed and overwhelmed. It would be incredibly difficult to trust anything again.

All the feelings that you've expressed seem normal for such an abnormal event. Wanting to isolate yourself or run away is common in this situation. However, this is something that, no matter how much you try, you will not be able to outdistance. It is imperative that you let yourself grieve about your loss and reconnect with others around you. When a person experiences a deep loss they are often so afraid of hurting again that they push the people that care about them away. When they do this the loss and the hurt remains encapsulated within. The scar never has a chance to heal.

I don't think that it really matters whether you stay living where you are or decide to live with your aunt. The real issue is whether you confront the enormous reality of the loss that you have incurred or whether you try to bury it in denial. I urge you to reach out and allow the people that love you to share this pain and to help you through it. They will not be able to completely understand; the ones that really care about you will try their best to put themselves in your position. I hope that this loss does not turn you away from living. I wish you the best.


This question was answered by Jef Gazley M.S. Jef has practiced psychotherapy for twenty-five years, specializing in Love Addiction, Hypnotherapy, Relationship Management, Dysfunctional Families, Co-Dependency, Professional Coaching, and Trauma Issues. He is a trained counselor in EMDR, NET, TFT, and Applied Kinesiology. He is dedicated to guiding individuals to achieving a life long commitment to mental health and relationship mastery. His private practice locations are Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona. You can also visit Jef at the internettherapist, the first audiovisual mental health online counseling center on the net.For more information visit:


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