30 Things I Want You To Know – Living Beyond Suicide-Helping Yourself or Helping A Friend
For most of us called upon to be with a grieving friend, it isn’t the big stuff (a death denying society, etc.) that gets in our way, but the basics. “What do I say?” “How can I help?” “Why did this happen?” “Can we find common ground?” Oftentimes, those basics become the barriers that make it easier to either say too little or say too much. And, at times, simply just to back away. Nan Zastrow’s son died by suicide. He was 21 years old.
Nan Zastrow has done some extraordinary work in the field of bereavement, none more touching than this book, her story, her testimony to her son, Chad. She seldom wavers from her commitment as an advocate and friend for the bereaved. She writes: “Today, I’m comfortable with being recognized as someone who is willing to talk about suicide and share information based on my own experience.” Everyone deserves care and support on the grief journey.
“This book brings her story to print with words that leap off the page. “That’s me!” She says of herself: “I am most vulnerable.” “I may need you to make notes about all the ‘important things’ I am being told – because minutes from now I will not remember what was said or who told it to me.” “I am a ‘shell’ of the person you once knew. My heart is broken, my spirit weak and my life is shattered.” “In reality, there may be little you can do to help me. But there is great value in your sustained presence. When I am most vulnerable, here is what I want you to know…” What follows are her, “30 things I want you to know.” You MUST read this book to learn more. Zastrow speaks frankly, not with bitterness or despair, but with hope. If your loss is not due to suicide, and you are trying to reach out to someone who is grieving, read this book. It will guide you on the right path.” – Richard B. Gilbert, PhD, CT Executive Director, The World Pastoral Care
Author: Nan Zastrow