Help Me Cope: My Best Friend Killed Himself

I am so sorry to hear that your best friend killed himself. Losing a friend to suicide is probably one of the most difficult things a person can go through.
This kind of grief is intense and can leave you feeling guilty and wondering what you could have done to stop your friend’s death.  Plus, it’s hard to stop thinking about your loss or to stop blaming yourself that this even happened.

 

 My Best Friend Killed Himself: Now What?

Here are some ideas to help you cope:

  1. Ask God to carry your pain, grief and even your feelings of guilt.
  2. Write down your feelings and memories about your friend in a special notebook, but don’t spend more than 15 minutes a day on this task.  It’s good to vent and express yourself, but if you spend too much time thinking about your loss, it may cause your feelings of grief to worsen. So try to find a good balance.
  3. Talk to a counselor and other adults about your feelings.
  4. Try to understand, then believe, that this really wasn’t your fault.  It wasn’t.
For help with guilt in survivors after suicide of a loved one, click here to read this free online book (PDF format):  SOS: A Handbook for Survivors of Suicide, by Jeffrey Jackson at suicidology.org. Here is an excerpt:
“Talking through your feelings and fears is essential for recovery from your trauma.Unfortunately, while your closest supporters may be willing to listen and share with you for a few weeks or months, there’s likely to come a time when their thoughts move on from the suicide while yours are still racing. This is why support groups are so valuable. Fellow survivors understand what you’re feeling in a way that even your closest friends cannot. Your fellow group members will never grow weary of offering supportive words and sympathetic ears.”

The author also offers this link through which you may find a local support group: Find a Suicide Bereavement Support Group at afsp.org (American Foundation for Suicide Prevention).

One day your pain will lessen, but even when that day comes, your friend will always live in your heart.

To read a letter that one mom wrote to her son who committed suicide, click this link: Suicide is NOT the Final Solution.
If you are hurting and you need to talk to someone, call a suicide hotline.
Here’s the story of how one teen coped with her loss when her best friend killed himself.
You may also find help from another one of our articles by clicking on this link:  The Effect Suicide Has On Loved Ones.