- 1a: a painful emotion caused by consciousness of guilt, shortcoming, or improprietyb : the susceptibility to such emotion <have you no shame?>
- 2: a condition of humiliating disgrace or disrepute : ignominy <the shame of being arrested>
- 3a: something that brings censure or reproach; also : something to be regretted : pity <it’s a shame you can’t go>b : a cause of feeling shame
Many survivors of suicide suffer a deep sense of shame due to the suicide of their loved ones. Some fathers don’t want to hear their son’s names. Some wives don’t want to talk about their husband’s death by suicide. In fact, they don’t want to talk about their husbands. Full stop. The morality associated with suicide is unique, probably due to historical and religious reasons. The tragic fact that they died seems to be completely overshadowed by how they died. The unbelievable pain of loss is compounded many times over by the associated shame. This is another big reason for the silence of suicide.
Shame is destructive.
There is no need for it in the present times. We don’t know the burden they carried. They fought their nightmarish battle alone. They carried pain beyond the limits of the human heart and soul for as long as they could.
They ran out of resources and hope. That is human.
No place for shame. Just love and compassion, for the living and the dead.