Motivation

Why I blamed myself for my original suicide (and why it wasn’t my fault)

“The amount of guilt cannot change the past, the amount of anxiety cannot change the future.” ~ Umar Ibn Al Khattab

I don’t remember the exact date the message arrived. It was from my son Julian and he had to talk to me. That sounded pretty serious. He really doesn’t have to talk to me.

His father was found dead earlier in the week. He hung his neck.

This news had little effect on Julian, but it hit me like a ton of bricks and I cried.

Our marriage

We met in a taxi 33 years ago. He was a driver and I was a drunk passenger. He was very handsome and frivolous. He took me home and we exchanged numbers and immediately started a relationship.

Within 6 months of dating, I found out that I was pregnant. I didn’t want to be an unmarried mother, so I got married and started living within a month. We both did a good job. I worked at a bank. He was an HVAC technician. Life was pretty good at first.

Then his work took us to another city. We moved and were the first person in our life to have no friends or family. I was 26 years old. Our marriage was okay, and we went well.

About six months after we moved to this new city, he started coming home later from work. One night it was until 2am. He always told me I had to work late. I believed in him. He was answering a lot of calls. I was at home a lot by myself.

A few months later, I decided to return to my hometown. He was to find a job there, but it wasn’t difficult. I didn’t want to be alone in this big city anymore, and I was just about to give birth. I wanted a family.

Life after moving

After returning to Japan, I stayed at my parents’ house and found my apartment within a month.

He found a job almost instantly and I delivered Julian two days after I got home. Life was going well.

About a year after living with the baby, things started to get worse. He was terribly “working late.” He went home by smelling alcohol around 2 or 3 in the morning. By the time Julian was 18 months old, I had plenty of time and asked him to leave. This wasn’t the life I wanted from my son.

He moved and for the next six months my life was hell. He came drunk at night, forced me to have sex, threatened to take my baby away from me, and threatened to kill both of us. He threatened me almost every day. I stayed at my friend’s house for many nights just to feel at ease. The police were called many times.

He finally left the state and it was years ago that we contacted him again.

Divorce agreement

The day has come to apply for a divorce and put the entire nightmare of this marriage behind me. I applied for sole custody without allowing his visit. He was unstable, dangerous and violent, and I didn’t seize the opportunity with my son. The fact that he lived far enough was my blessing.

Also, there was no child support payment in the divorce agreement. I wanted to completely cut off my relationship with this guy. So I did just that.

12 years later

It was longer, maybe 13 or 14 years later, we received the package from him through his brother. Sent to Julian. A photo of a silver chain with a pendant of myself and St. Christopher.

It didn’t mean anything to Julian. He didn’t even know who this person was. I doubted his gesture. Was he trying to make amends? Did he probably want to prove that he changed and he wanted to start a relationship with his son?

I didn’t get an answer to any of those questions. After that, he never contacted me again.

When my son moved to college, he was only a few hours away from his father. He probably tried to meet his dad through his uncle, but his dad wasn’t interested and declined the offer.

And life simply continued.

From time to time, over the years, Julian’s uncle updated us with what his father was doing and how he was doing. Alcohol and depression seem to have been a major part of his life.

I couldn’t help feeling responsible for this.

Was he depressed because I took his only child away from him? Was this my fault? Every time I got another update, I felt guilty. Did I do this to him?

call

When I received the call, I was completely shocked. I didn’t think his depression was so terrible. How did you know Were there any other factors involved in his suicide? Or was it just a few years of anguish to find out that I had a son who wasn’t part of his life?

Would this have been prevented if his son was part of his life? Did I do this?

I cried for a week. I have never felt so sad or guilty. Very guilty. Am I responsible for someone’s suicide?

Deal with my sadness and guilt

It took me a while to wrap my head around his suicide. It also took me a while to convince myself that I wasn’t responsible and that I shouldn’t feel guilty. I didn’t tell anyone about this. No one could understand my feelings and it was hard to explain.

But I noticed that he was fighting a demon that had nothing to do with me. I made the best choice for my son, and that was the most important thing for me.

He also made his choice. And I had nothing to do with them. It was the result of his actions and choices that I did not allow him to visit his son. He chose his action. not me. I chose not to hurt my child by his actions.

I had to speak myself through it. It’s not your fault, Iva. He could have chosen to change his life, improve his life, and reach out to his son more often. And he chose not to do so.

It’s not your fault, Iva.

There is a small part of me that I wish things were different. If he got the help of his depression and alcoholism. If he was part of Julian’s life. If he could try to help himself.

I’m sorry his life ended so tragically. I’m always sorry. But I don’t feel guilty about it anymore.

It’s not our fault

Taking responsibility for the suicide of a loved one is very easy, especially when you set tight boundaries for your own well-being. “If I did this or did it” or “If I didn’t do it”, but in reality it’s not our fault.

We have no control over how people think, act, react and live in their lives. We can only control our lives. What people do in their lives is out of our reach. We can provide them with tools and help, but it is up to them to accept and use them.

If not, it’s not our fault either. It’s easy to think that I should / should have done more, but I did everything I could. The rest was up to them.

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