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Ten Years Later it Still Hurts

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Hey guys,

My therapist suggested that I try to find a support group either online or near me. This seemed like the best option.

My story: In December 2006, my little brother Peter, my buddy and best friend, was diagnosed with a tumor in his brain stem. For 16 months I watched him deteriorate until March 2008, when he passed away. He was 8 and I was 11. I had no idea what to do with the grief I was left with and so for the longest time I didn’t process it, going through middle school and high school with this weight on my back. I had seemingly random outbursts of anger and sadness, I felt alienated from my peers, and I developed apathy toward things that didn’t seem vitally important (which made passing classes hard since homework often fell into the “unimportant” category). Despite all this, overall I was doing okay. Not great, but okay.

After graduating high school, I went to BYU for one semester and then went on hiatus to serve a Mormon mission. During that first semester at BYU I started to notice some depressive tendencies but they got better after I left on my mission. However, about 8 months into my mission I started to truly feel depressed. There were days where I couldn’t leave the apartment, let alone adhere to the rigorous schedule of a Mormon missionary. I was prescribed an antidepressant and I tried some free counseling that was available to me, but after two months my depression and anxiety were so bad that I had to be sent home. 

It’s been over a year since then and I’m still not doing very well. I attempted another semester at BYU but I started getting alarmingly suicidal and so I came home once again. I’ve tried several different antidepressants but none have seemed to work. I’m in therapy right now and my therapist and I have talked about Peter a lot. The effects of his death and the things I “learned” from it (my parents are fallible, the world is scary, I am powerless, I am alone) seem to be inextricably connected to my current state of depression and anxiety. I have never been as afraid of the future as I am now. 

Thus ends my tale of woe (for now).



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Hey, my sister, Megan, died 10 years ago- she was 18, I was 22. I understand how it’s still really hard, even after all this time. It sorta feels like it just happened... crazy that it’s been 10 years without her. It’s like a totally different life we have to get use to. 

I try to tell myself that I need to try, for her, because she can’t- do find some joy, to keep going without her. I think talking about her and talking to people who understand is helpful, helps me keep her memory alive... helps me find something good out of something so shitty. 

You just have to take it one day at a time- and you are not alone, there are lots of us- in this club that we never wanted to be in, together. There are lots of fb groups where people talk about missing their siblings- always reach out when you need to talk, I promise there are others out there wanting to talk as well. Plus, your brother is still with you too. I swear my sister sends me little signs when I need it most- I see her exact car when I’m having “one of those days” or I hear a Megan song, in the radio, a song that I hadn’t heard on the radio since 2007. I really do think they are signs saying she’s still here for me. Maybe you have things happen like that too?

Things will get better, just gotta keep trying. I’m sure your brother would want you to keep trying. If you need someone to talk to, I don’t mind giving out my email. Take care and know you’re not alone!

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