Letter: Sharing the stories

Columnist replies

Ask Auntie columnist Faye Arcand shares her response to an emotional letter in the Feb. 13 Western News

Dear Lenora and Don Robson of Penticton,

Thank you so much for sharing the story of your granddaughter Shelsey. I’m so sorry for your family’s loss.

I wept as I read about your struggle to get her help. I can’t imagine the constant frustration and bone-chilling fear you lived with on a daily basis. It must’ve been exhausting for all involved. The real world presence of teen suicide, mental health and self-harm needs to be recognized and brought out of the shadows and into the bright light of everyday life.

Your published letter is a spotlight on the problem and also the local YES project for youth in crisis. During any crisis, whether the patient or the bystander, I think being alone and without resources would be the most helpless feeling in the world. Then to be followed by the social stigma and horrible shame that surrounds suicide can leave survivors isolated and confused. I applaud your honesty in the sharing of Shelsey’s story. I know it’ll make a difference.

Faye Arcand

Penticton

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