Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dear sons: It's never hopeless

Letter #10

Dear sons:

I've been so troubled the last couple days by something that happened just a few blocks from here. Two nights ago, a 16-year-old committed suicide, jumping in front of a moving train. It saddens me in so many ways. This was a young man - a high school junior - with his whole life ahead of him. It's so hard to imagine what might have been going through his head to cause him to end his life this way.

My heart breaks for his parents, siblings and the rest of his family members, his neighbors, his classmates at the local high school. I know there are a lot of people who knew him feeling pangs of guilt and wondering if they could have done something to change the tragic outcome. He must have felt completely desperate and hopeless to think that his life was no longer worth living. I don't want any of you to ever feel that way. I want you to know how much you're loved, how many people care about you, how heartbroken we'd be if you ever left us. I want you to feel like you can come to me or any of the adults in our family with your troubles, concerns, worries. I know high school can be a scary time. I was there once. Every teen has feelings of uncertainty and of not fitting in at some point. Everyone has to learn to deal with them. Those who don't often end up in tragic situations such as this one.

I also feel for all those who were there after the fact - the police officers and firefighters who responded to the call (your father was one of them) as well as the train engineer whose life will never be the same after seeing a person in front of a train he could not stop. The images of this tragedy will stick with them and that saddens me as well.

Again, I just want to let you know that there's never anything in life that is hopeless. You just need to find someone that can help. Sometimes that means you need to reach out. Don't ever feel like you're life isn't worth living because it very much is, especially to me.

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