Reblog: Illnesses that no one saw coming


2013 was a pivotal year for me in a number of ways.

The blog post I have screenshot and am sharing below was a tremendously healing and perspective shifting for me. I shared this widely then, and continues to a source that I draw from nearly a decade later.


I believe in synchronicity.

I believe in and welcome the arrival of the most perfect people, teachers, words, inspiration, motivation, products etc coming into my world.

As the Universe would have it, I was compelled to click on a link that led me to the following post regarding the language used in, amongst, around and in association with Suicide.

Here is what’s troublesome about the term “suicide survivor.” With cancer, heart disease, liver failure and so on, the survivor is the person who is directly affected by the health problem, who lives it and sometimes dies from it.
By taking on the role of “suicide survivor,” the bereaved accept the role of “victim” as well, since they are inexorably connected. You cannot be a survivor without being a victim.
And to be a victim, there must be a perpetrator.
Would that perpetrator, then, be the very person for whom they grieve?

This post has shaken my core, in as much as I have been precipitating the very stigma around Suicide that I “wished” did not exist, however never thought to turn the language around as I have in other areas of my life.  The author has given me a powerful tool to do just that.

When we replace “killed themselves” or “committed suicide” with “had a fatal depressive episode,” we start to see the horror of the mental illness that took our son, our daughter, our sister, our brother, our husband, our wife, cousin or friend.
And we can reduce the stigma, we can open a real dialogue, we can stop blaming our loved ones and ourselves and get to the tasks at hand – understanding, healing and prevention.

No matter if or how you have had an experience with suicide this post may very well be a catalyst of change.

Change in how we think about Suicide;
Change in how we don’t talk about Suicide;
Change in how we feel about Suicide;
Change in how we heal;
Change in how we move forward.

I am grateful for Joel Kobren’s, honesty, vulnerability and courage in the post “Illnesses that no one saw coming”. 


The original website is no longer active or supported and the link above takes you to an archive which is still accessible. Regardless, I have taken the liberty to screen shot it below, including my comment and the author’s response, so that I have it, just for myself, and can always come back to read its wisdom.


Hey–This is hard stuff, no matter how many years have passed.  If you want support with your hard stuff, let’s have a conversation.

I’m ready when you are.

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