Monday, December 29, 2008

Real life

I read on Gabriella Moonlight's blog that on Christmas Eve Liquid Illuzion (Suzanne Horne) committed suicide. She had posted comments on my site, having found a link via Shadow. I read more about her by going to Cliff's blog.

When I read her obituary I was smacked in the face by the fact that this wasn't just a person who wrote on the computer. This was a real person who was having a lot of difficulty and who continued to wish people Merry Christmas on the very evening that she decided to end her own life. I felt profound sadness that she thought there was no other way to work through whatever was bothering her.

Even though Suzanne was not a person that I knew, I felt as others have expressed that perhaps there was something that could have been written to her that would have sparked a bit of hope in her heart. And I felt guilty for having written about Christmas traditions and my happiness when another was obviously suffering so, even though I know in my head that is irrelevant to what happened.

I understand Suzanne's sadness, having contemplated several times during my darkest hours that life was hardly worth living. Now I see that there is so much to live for. And I realize that I am not alone because my Higher Power is there with me even during the dark times. I wish that Suzanne had known that there is a way to get through a day, an hour, 15 minutes. I'm sorry that she gave up before the miracle happened in her life.


  1. i was totally shocked when i got the news. like you say, there was no indication of the dire need she was in. i feel a loss, even though i didn't personally know her. you expressed beautiful sentiments here.

  2. Suzanne had shared with me many of her struggles that she was going through in the past year. Despite all this, she was there to help me through some of the things I faced. When my brother passed away this past march, she dropped me a line and told me it was as if she lost a member of her own family. It was Suzanne who introduced me to many blogging friends outside of my home area. I lost a friend, but it also feels that I lost a part of myself.

    Thank you for the link to my blog. I am working on an open letter to Suzanne. Please check back in the next five hours.

  3. It struck me as so odd when I read about this yesterday on Cliffs blog. I would be very interested in a time line, because something does not feel right to me. She left very jolly witty comments on Christmas Eve.
    I would hope that by writting the "everyday stuff" of recover would bring hope to those who need it.
    I've watched enough people die in my life to know that I could not have done much different.
    It is sad.
    It is always sad.

  4. Thanks Syd for this information. I was not aware of the situation at all.

    This reminds me that some people hide their pain. They need help and want help, but are unable to let other people into their deepest minds and hearts. I know this only too well. Been there - done that - and I work really hard to never repeat being in that place again.

    I too am sorry that a miracle that had just not happened yet - is no more possible - at least not on this side.

  5. It is always sad when someone loses this precious life we have. I've always been, mentally, very far from ever thinking of taking my own life. Because of that I'm not sure I can fully relate to how someone could actually commit suicide. I'm sorry that Suzzane felt that was her only option, and I'm also grateful that you have found that it wasn't yours.

  6. .. I am new to Recovery Blogs; and I'm so sad to read this. I'm wordless.... sending ((((hugs)))) to anyone that might be sad and need it. When 1 Light goes out .. the world light does diminish... we are all connected.

    Betty Ann

    P.S. a few times I thought of ending it all; but realized on the darkest times .. in the deepest PITS...I had no way else to go but UP--I was down enough. Sometimes I just stayed NUMB until I healed.. and that was a blessing.

  7. I have never felt even remotely that hopeless. But I agree with Pam, I think there is nothing anyone could have done, especially as virtual strangers. All we can do is remember the joy & humor she shared on her blog.

  8. Its tragic, she was my age and hiding ones pain is something I have almost mastered in my life. Wishing others well - reaching out to give or console or comfort was my MO while getting or asking or taking what I needed was not something I did at all.

    It is tragic.

  9. This is so sad. My gosh. I keep thinking that this is *just* the internet...but the internet is filled with real live people on the other end of these computers with feelings and good and bad days. This is so tragic.

  10. i never ran across her in blogland and wish i would have known her.. certainly gives pause doesn't it.

    it always amazes me to SEE someone and note to yourself 'how well they look or seem' and then find out something they are struggling with internally and it never shows. just because people look well (or in this case 'sound' or 'read' well), the total opposite could be the case.

    it's very sad that we humans can keep so much inside and NOT find ways to deal with our heads. there were many times i had the thought of ending it years ago but to actually do it - must be an unimaginable amount of suffering prior to. gosh - just so sad really.

    goodness gracious - that's just so sad.

  11. I've worked with people who are contemplating suicide, and also with the families left behind when this choice is made.

    No-one can ever say the magic words to keep another person alive - it just doesn't work that way. With many people in that state of mind, it's almost as if they are living behind a pane of glass - you can close, but there is a barrier beyond which you cannot pass.

    The decision has usually been made quite a time before the actual act. I've so many times heard friends and family say in bewilderment that the person was more cheerful, happier, more relaxed just before they commit suicide
    It's because they have made the decision, and they know their pain is going to end.

    Please don't reproach yourself, Syd.

  12. Very interesting points cheryl. thank you for sharing.
    Also thanks syd for the post. I didn't know Suzanne either.

    For some reason I do not entirely understand I can often see who is a suicide risk before they contemplate or commit the act. I can also tell when people want to die but have no intention of killing themselves. I find it is possible to teach other sponsees how to to see this as well, so it is not a unique skill to me. Its not difficult. Just consists of noticing verbally uncommunicated moods.
    It bothers me as often I do not have the time to assist those people in meaningful ways as I work full time, and they are often people I do not have a friendship with or relationships as such. They are acquaintances. People I pass by at work, socially or in meetings.

    Quite a few of former sponsees have felt suicidal at some point in the past so I am accustomed to dealing with that type. I only select the ones I think I can help. Those that rebuke me or are suspicious of my intent are very very difficult to help.
    I would go as far as to say that I sometimes deliberately choose to sponsor people who I am almost certain will want to kill themselves at a later date as I see their crippling vulnerability long before they do (they are in complete denial usually) and I feel I have to try and help. Not very often and only when I think I can get through to them, as I do not meet that kind every day! Thank goodness..

    As it happens I am currently concerned about someone who I see as temporarily high risk. and because so many people I worry about seem to act sooner than I think, I have asked others at to keep an eye on him and maintain phone contact in some small way and to be aware that he is a high risk until his circumstance start to improve. I hope he is not another casualty that gets forgotten.

    So yes I did not know Suzanne, but looking at her blog she reminds me of many people I have met who have thought of taking their lives.

    I too have experienced the desire to snuff out my existence by suicide, fatal accident or terminal illness, but lacked the ? Fearlessness to carry it out. (obviously!) So yes I understand the reasoning.
    Because I meet so many who have contemplated the same, I include a suicide e book on permanent display on my sidebar called

    Free eBook Download: Suicide: The Forever Decision by Paul Quinnett. Just read the Introduction on page 4

    Its a very good thing to have on hand for those that may be feeling suicidal. Its not a cure but its better than nothing.

    sorry for being too long!!!

  13. The most disturbing thing to me about suicide is that in my research and writing (professionally) about it, I have discovered that those who survive NEVER want to die the next day. That means that 100% of the people who decide to suicide change their minds.

    I am so sorry to hear of a beautiful young woman who made that permanent decision.

  14. I remember what it feels like to just wish the pain would go away. I didn't think about the act itself at the time..I just wanted the despair and hopelessness to end. I was 15 at the time and have never forgotten. My heart hurts when I hear about suicide. The questions left behind don't get answered. I am so sorry....

  15. I was very saddened when I saw that too, that she wished us a merry christmas and then... baffeling, sad

  16. This sad news has affected me also. I never visited suzanne's blog before Gabi wrote about her death. Her final posts before she took her life were so loving and giving. It breaks my heart she suffered so. I hope she has found peace from whatever was plaguing her.

    For some reason, her blog's pictures made me want to take self portraits of myself. Ordinarily I despise having my picture taken and can't stand pictures of myself. But something about Suzanne made me want to like what I see in the images. So, I spent part of my afternoon taking bad pictures with my iPhone. Some came out alright. I'll keep trying until, I don't know. I'll just keep trying.

  17. I am finally catching up on my blogs. What sad news. It scares me how you really know so little about a person even when you think you know so much.

    So sad. Thanks for sharing this.

  18. Thank you for linking to remembering Suzanne. She had a wonderful family, had great support from us all. Sometimes, when a person decides they wants to go, there is nothing no one can do to stop them. A lot of us have traveled in darkness --- some of us just can't seem to get out of it.

    I know, yes, I believe she is at peace.

  19. Thanks for sharing. I am still so sad about this.


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