Catheririne K

by Catherine K

I lost my beautiful daughter, Stephanie on November 15th 2011. She took her own life after struggling with bipolar disorder for 20 years. She was 42. My heart is broken and I feel it will never mend. Less than two weeks later, her Dad, my ex-husband, who I was still close to died after fighting cancer for two years. To lose both of them in such a short space of time was unbearable because I know each of them suffered because of the other's illness.
To make matters worse, we had lost our beloved son, Stephen at the age of 26 in 1997 and of course, all the old wounds have been reopened. When Stephanie died, I only had those two short weeks to comfort my ex-husband and I went over and found him dead. I think it was just too much for him after putting up a brave fight with the cancer.
Now, I think of both of them all the time. I can't stop crying and surround myself with Stephanie's things to make me feel closer to her.
I wish this terrible pain would go away. That I could fall asleep and when I wake up,all would be well again.
I have to go on as I still have my youngest daughter left and now it is just the two of us.
I feel like a failure as a mother to have lost two out of three children and just wish there was more I could have done to help them.
I am just praying that I will feel better one of these days but right now, it is unbearable.
I read some of the other stories of loss and I feel so bad because I know that other people are going through the same thing.
My Stephanie was a wonderful girl who did not deserve such a terrible mental illness and she tried so hard to beat it, always following doctors' orders and tried to work whenever she could.
I treasure a note she wrote me the last time she was in the hospital. She said " Mom, don't worry about me. Please be happy. Love, you, Steph.
I will miss her forever.

Comments for Catheririne K

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Feb 05, 2012
I am so sorry
by: Anonymous

My family has had a number of suicides and my greatest fear is that someday I will get a call that my daughter has killed herself, she also suffers from bi-polar. It seems like every month or so I am on a roller coast ride with her and her emotions - that is not even the sad part - she married a man who also suffers from a mental illness and he has told me and others on numerous occasions that he is going to kill my 18 month old grandson. I wake up some nights screaming out to God to put a hedge of protection around that household. My daughter lives about 3000 miles away from me. We have tried living in the same city. I have just found it too stressful. I find it too easy to live in their drama. I have had to get them outside help so many times. My sister just died on January 26, this year, she like other members of my family had mental illness - I don't know if it was bi-polar or not. But I am so sorry for your loss. I just want you to know you are not alone - that others have similar - not the same - but we want to support you. So keep reaching out - we care......

Feb 05, 2012
Sharing Your Loss
by: Anne

(continued from previous comment)

As this site outlines, the stages of grief have to be lived through and I can start to identify with some now. I think it is good how they have described it and I am realising now how it is SO important to go through the stages and work through it all.
I threw myself into working hard after my son passed away. It was the only way I could stop the nightmare drilling at my brain every minute. That's how it felt. I thought I was doing as OK as could be.
However, it ended with me having an imposed rest. I was signed off work and I had burnt myself out.
I then had time to let my emotions go and I think I spent all of December crying when I didn't even know what set me off. It was release of emotions that had been too hard to face before I guess. Even now on days when I feel much better, I look back at them and realise that I still was not as good as I thought...but I really am progressing now.

My dear, nothing can take away the pain really, except knowing that our loved ones may be in a better place and i truly believe their spirits are around us. I do believe that this life is just a psrt of existence and that passing on is just really a thin veil away...I have felt it so often and I actually smell my son near me at times and I talk to him and my parents as if they are near me..and aT times I feel I can sense their reply. I have been going to a spiritualist church and have had some messages come through to tell me this is for real too.
I think, you will feel like me, that through the lives of a child who is troubled with mental health issues or diabilities, one is even more involved as a carer. It is exhausting at times. We fight for them to have the very best chance and then-gone...a void. After all that energy and caring, it is such a big void to not be doing it any more. That makes it so, so hard too.And then you have such raw wounds too from your dear son. God how doubly painful for you my dear. There are probably times when you think you may be going mad, it is all normal parts of this process of grief.And then your ex. My ex is fighting cancer now too,so who knows what is ahead with that.

I just want to say that I am here and we can communicate if you want. Be kind to yourself and allow the stages to wash over you, keep the light burning and know your loved ones are there beside you xx

Feb 05, 2012
Sharing your loss
by: Anne

I am so sorry you have had so much pain and loss to bear and when I read your story I just wanted to make contact and send you a hug and tell you that all you are feeling is also totally normal. It is still very early days yet following your dear Stephanie's passing recently.
I lost my darling son, Tommy on June 18th 2011. It seems like just yesterday still and although I lost my Mum at 16 and my Dad just 5 years ago, there is no way I could have understood the loss of one's child until this happened. My Tommy also struggled through his life with Organic Mental Disorder, like Bipolar disorder... and was diagnosed with a personality disorder. He was also profoundly Deaf and although he had some very happy moments, a lot of his life was also very sad and hard for him. He did try so hard to battle it and had so many ambitions.
With my son when he was not well he would turn to the drink and addicitions again. We will never know if he meant to take his life, but whatever...he had had enough at the time.
Like you I'm sure, I have been through all the 'What if's', the 'I should have done this..or that'.
That will surely carry on but there is some kind of relief now I think and a bit of acceptance that maybe he is actually in a better place.


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