We Came To Believe

Good evening faithful reader – 12/14/2021

My name is Bob Cristello and my son Anthony James Cristello killed himself on August 16, 2017 at the age of 35. On that day I became a member of the largest worldwide community that no one wishes to become a member of.

We came, We came to, We came to believe.

These words are being spoken right now, all over the world. They are spoken in quiet anonymous rooms where people recover from things they have no control over. They are also spoken in rooms like this one where grieving parents come to gather and share their experiences, strength and hope.

We all were notified, some of us were the ones to discover, the death of our children. It is an experience we all share. That moment when the world thought we were grieving and we were simply in shock. When the world felt we should have moved beyond our grieving period, most of us are still in shock. Somehow, We came to find this group. In that sense, We came.

After the shock wears off and we learn to not relive the trauma of the shock over and over again, We came to. We woke up, realized how much pain we were in and some of us wanted the numbness of the shock back. I always found it strange how I could want something worse than what was before me, but I suppose I started to understand my son even more intimately at that moment.

After a time of sharing, growing and healing, We came to believe. What it was we came to believe in was immaterial. What I believed in during those first few months in this group was simply the idea that I could return to the world of the living. Once I stopped asking the question ‘Why’ Anthony killed himself I started asking myself the question ‘What was my role in the death of my son?’

In that moment, I came to believe in something outside of myself. I rarely give that something a name because I do not wish to confuse a religion with a spiritual concept. I do believe I was healed from my shame that day and given the strength to carry on for one more day. The only purpose in that was to be a good father to my living children, a good husband to my wife and a good friend to my fellow parents who were still in shock. Also, I felt a great responsibility knowing that in 40 seconds another child will die and another parent will join our group.

If you are new, please take a moment and read some of the posts. If you can, just click on a hug button or a heart button. If you feel strong enough, answer another post. If you are brave, create a post of your own. If you are hurting, please reach out. You reaching out helps others to hold on to their progress by sharing their experiences with you.

The holiday season is a difficult time for everyone, not just parents of suicide. I see you and I love you. You are all in my heart this holiday season.

My name is Bob, thank you for letting me share.