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The funeral director helped me to touch his face and to give him a kiss, and then something came over me. I couldnt stop kissing him, rubbing his hair. Somebody needed to be with him at all times and I told everybody the same. We would not have coped without them all around.

'When I was told my brother had died by suicide, I crumbled to the floor and howled'

Rubbing his hands, his hair, kissing his face, playing him music and singing to him. I was in a daze and only felt okay when I was beside him. He had suffered with depression for quite sometime, alongside drug addictions. In April , he made an attempt, and thankfully then, he was not successful. He was disturbed, and advised by a doctor that was called to attend the hospital to speak with a psychiatric specialist. He was finally called in and seen to by a specialist and was in and out quicker than I had time to get a coffee.

I was in shock. My whole family were in shock. He was sent away after making an attempt to take his own life with a letter in his hand. The following morning I contacted the unit he had been referred to to see when he could go in, and they said they had received the referral and gave me an appointment for him on the phone. Two months — are you actually kidding me, I asked. I kicked up a bit of a fuss on the phone and told them exactly what I thought.

We tried and tried to get professional help for Derek at that time, but all we ended up getting was help from counsellors. He went for a one session and that was it.

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Help for people with mental health issues in this country is not readily available, in fact the mental health system in Ireland is an absolute disgrace, and Derek is proof of that. Our professionals sent him home and told us all there was nothing wrong with him. Well, why is he 6 feet under now?

Derek could have been saved with the right professional help and I firmly believe this. He had mental health problems, and with the right treatment and care he could still be with us today. We are just one of many families let down by the lack of support for people with mental health issues. On average people per year take their own life in Ireland. Approx of this number are men.

Those figures are just crazy. I cry, a lot. My own mind is now probably my worst enemy. Like last night, I lay in bed trying so hard to get some sleep, but my heart was beating so hard I could feel it in my back, and my mind was playing out the moment Derek took his own life, it was as if I was there with him at the time and I was replaying a memory. I just want it to stop sometimes. I try very, very hard to put on a brave face when I am having a bad day. The bad days are the worst. Why Derek? He was harmless, he had a heart of gold and he was probably one of the most affectionate and loving men I know.

He always told us he loved us. He was so funny too, he always knew how to make us laugh from the time he was able to talk. I had my rows with him through the years, gave him a hard time for some of the choices he was making in life and about his drug use, but only because I cared and wanted the best for him.

It does still make me feel guilty now. My mam said to me that there was some vodka in her apartment that I could take, so I text Derek Dez and said I would be over to get some and he said no bother. The feckers had drank most of it and topped it back up with water.

'When I was told my brother had died by suicide, I crumbled to the floor and howled'

We had a laugh and I left them with the watered down vodka and told them to have a good night. Dez gave me a hug and said thanks Chelle. I knew he was thanking me for not giving out to him for having crowds there. That was the last time I heard his lovely laugh and the last hug I got from him. How can parents bury their own child. How are they coping? When I think of how they must feel my heart feels like its shattering into a million pieces. They are the strongest people I know and they are there for me and my brother, Robert and encourage us both to talk about our feelings and ask how we are doing every day as do we with them.

But how do they do it when their own hearts are broken. I worry about them both every single day. My brother Robert. He worries about everybody and always wants to be sure that we are all okay even though his heart has been ripped out. He adored Derek and did everything he could to protect him. He was always there for Derek no matter what and they were as close as brothers could be and everyday on Whatsapp. Rob still goes to send Derek links on articles about football or whatever.

He is a broken man now, but still makes sure everybody else is okay before himself. He is one of a kind and I love him very much. It hurts me seeing him hurting so much. Hes kept busy with his 3-year-old torment of a daughter, Emma.

Michelle Bless out of darkness

Torment in the sweetest way is what I mean! My only niece. Boy, did he adore her. She is talking now and he will never get to see all of that. She will never remember the love that Derek had for her or the bond they had. She loves her uncle Derek and talks about him all the time. She sings the new Adele song and I cry every time. They are just some of the things that go through my head. Some of the pain I feel, and some of the sorrow that I carry around with me most days. My Mam has taken her heartbreak and put it into something that is there to help prevent any other family from going through exactly what she has.

Think about what you are leaving behind. Try and understand that you are so loved and everyone in your life will do anything to save you. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. It means so much to me that we could help save another family from this heartache, and also save many more precious lives. For you Dez. I love and miss you every second.

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Thank you for the strength you give me, for the good days, and keep looking over us all. I feel you with me sometimes. Rest in paradise my love. Michelle Ross is a year-old fashion and beauty blogger. Pieta House, the Centre for the Prevention of Self-Harm or Suicide, offers a specialised treatment programme for people who have suicidal ideation or who participate in self-harming behaviors.

The service is free of charge, but donations are welcome.

The specialised treatment programme offers a comprehensive service aimed at individuals and their families who are affected by:. Michelle is appealing to everyone to sign up to this years Darkness into Light walk which takes place around the country. It takes place on 7th May starting at 4. All registration fees go directly to Pieta House. Remember this year for the first year, you can select Fairyhouse as your chosen venue.

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Wire service provided by Associated Press. Journal Media does not control and is not responsible for user created content, posts, comments, submissions or preferences. She has been a radical Christian for fourteen years. She currently resides in Kentucky with her husband. Michelle Bless. Battling Abuse from All Sides.