On September 11, 2019 my heart broke. My cousin Sandy and her son Michael were shot by her husband. My 25 year old cousin escaped through the window, as she heard her brother pleading for his life. Eric, the husband and father then turned the gun on himself.
The news sent shockwaves through our entire family, as Eric had always been known for his kind and gentle nature. We were left bewildered, struggling to comprehend how such a tragedy could befall our loved ones. Our hearts ached for my dear cousin Rachel, who lost her mother, father, and brother in a single, devastating moment.
In our hearts and souls, we choose to remember each of them as the incredible souls they were. The memories of spending time with Sandy and Michael, our regular gatherings and cherished moments together, will be deeply missed. I feel an immense sense of gratitude and blessing for having had them in my life. They were truly a gift. Whenever thoughts of them arise, I can feel their presence here and now, forever with me.
Throughout the past few years, I have dedicated myself to the journey of healing, and I wanted to take a moment to share a few insights with you, in case you have experienced something similar.
Experiencing a family murder-suicide is a traumatic event that can leave survivors feeling overwhelmed, devastated, and lost. Coping with and healing from this kind of tragedy requires time, effort, and support from loved ones, mental health professionals, and community resources. In this essay, we will discuss some ways to cope and heal from a family murder-suicide.
First, it is essential to seek support from loved ones, friends, or family members. Grief can be isolating, but it is important to remember that you are not alone. It is essential to reach out to people you trust and share your feelings with them. They can provide you with emotional support, listen to your concerns, and provide comfort during this challenging time.
Second, consider seeking professional mental health support. A therapist can help you process your feelings and work through any trauma associated with the murder-suicide. Therapy can also help you develop coping strategies that will help you manage your emotions and move forward.
Third, participate in a support group. Support groups can provide a safe space to share your experiences with others who have gone through a similar situation. It can be comforting to know that you are not alone and that others understand what you are going through. Support groups also provide an opportunity to learn from others’ experiences and develop new coping strategies.
Fourth, take care of yourself. It is important to prioritize your physical and emotional well-being during this time. This includes eating a healthy diet, getting enough rest, and engaging in physical activity. Taking care of yourself can help reduce stress and promote healing.
Fifth, consider participating in a memorial or tribute to honor the memory of your loved ones. This can be a powerful way to celebrate their lives and provide closure for yourself and others.
Finally, remember that healing takes time. There is no right or wrong way to grieve, and everyone’s journey is different. Be patient with yourself and seek help when you need it.
In conclusion, coping and healing from a family murder-suicide is a difficult and complex process that requires time, effort, and support. It is essential to seek help from loved ones, mental health professionals, and community resources. Remember to take care of yourself, participate in support groups, and honor the memory of your loved ones. With time, you can heal and find a path forward.