“I won’t lie, there are times when I thought about taking my own life.” – Alfred

Peter died a month before his 32nd birthday.

He was a good looking, clean shaven young man, with lots of friends. He took pride in his pipe-fitting company and in owning a townhouse. According to his dad, Alfred, “he had his head on straight”.

Peter’s sudden death from a fentanyl overdose was a tragic end to his life, leaving his parents completely devastated. Alfred told us:

“Burying your child is a parent’s worst nightmare – the things that go through your mind are unbelievable.”

Alfred was haunted by questions of why it happened, whether he was to blame, or what he could have done differently. He fell into a state of depression which was very hard to come out of. “Many, many times I went to sleep crying.”

When his wife of 42 years left him, following the traumatic loss of their son, there were times when Alfred felt unable to cope.

As things kept going from bad to worse, it seemed like Alfred’s life was spiraling out of control. An accident causing water damage to special mementos of his son, seemed like the last straw.

“I won’t lie, there are times when I thought about taking my own life. With my wife gone, and Peter gone, what was the point of living?”

Knowing it was essential for him to talk about his pain and let his emotions out, Alfred came to Pilgrims Hospice and started grief counselling once a week.

“I was a wreck when I first started coming to Pilgrims. I found such solace in crying. Had I not come, I don’t think I’d be alive today.”

Just being able to talk made all the difference. With the help of a trained professional, and a safe place to release his trauma, over time Alfred found ways to live with his pain.

“I loved Peter dearly and that will never stop, He made a mistake and it cost him his life. I can’t sugar-coat that.”

Grief counselling helped Alfred accept that he would never understand what happened to his son.

“The pain never goes away but you learn to deal with it in different ways. I give a lot of credit to Pilgrims Hospice for helping me talk about devastating circumstances, and to go on from there.”

The typical cost of grief counselling is $200 an hour. With your help, we are able to offer this service free of charge to our clients.

Please make a gift today, so individuals like Alfred have a trained professional to talk to, and find reasons to keep living after the death of a loved one.

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