An Open Letter To Anyone Who Has Lost Someone To Murder


Dear You,

I know you’ve heard your fair shares of “I’m so sorry,” and “I couldn’t even imagine what you’re going through.” There have been so many people, even ones you haven’t talked to in years, reaching out to you to share their condolences. So many cards, texts, flower arrangements, and meals.

Tragic deaths, especially ones by murder aren’t something the mind is fully capable of processing. Receiving a call, THE CALL that forever changes your life is unexplainable. The sudden shock of instant sadness, and losing your breath as if you had the wind knocked out of you. So many emotions all at once, your body doesn’t even know how to react.

Such shock doesn’t give one time to process, we are left with so many unanswered questions, the “what if’s” and the “why’s.” The feeling of hopelessness, anger, and sadness take over.

You’re left with the thought of never hearing their voice, or feeling their touch again. Imagining all of the holidays, and special events without them. We all see and hear things that are so tragic happening to other people, and families, but you never once stop to think, “What if this was me, what that was my loved one?” We all have these picture-perfect visions of how life is supposed to play out, but never once think anything so heart-wrenching could happen to us.

You then are expected to put on this “black outfit” and attend the funeral. The funeral where you don’t actually feel like you’re there. You just go through the motions, the feelings, but you’re pretty much in a daze the entire time. You feel as if you’re in some horror movie, watching from the outside.

Days pass, you still haven’t processed anything, yet you know you have to continue your life. You have to go back to work and face your coworkers who really don’t know what to say. You watch tv shows, or movies and see characters get shot or stabbed to death and all you can do is uncontrollably cry. People make comments when they’re overwhelmed, or frustrated like “oh just shoot me” or they make gestures of shooting themselves in the head, and you cringe, you panic, you try not to overreact. They don’t understand those things get to you.

You may have a family that bottles up their feelings and chooses to not talk about what has happened when all you want to do is be able to talk to someone who feels the same pain you do. You may try to talk to friends about it, and just know they mean the best, but when someone hasn’t gone through what you have, they don’t honestly know what to say to you. Most of the time you will feel as if they’re pitying you, but they’re not. They’re trying to be there for you the best that they can.

You feel as if you start living two different lives. The one where you put on this smile and try to be strong and the other deep down your heart is constantly crying in pain.

Months, or even years pass, you have finally gotten a grasp on life. Although it may not be a tight grasp, you’re learning how to cope with your pain and live on, because you know that’s what your loved one would have wanted.

There is no time limit on grief, just know this. Every day you will hurt, but each day you will find a way to carry on.

Murder isn’t really a subject that’s talked about. And I know you know what I’m talking about when I say this. You may meet new people you feel comfortable talking to, so you open up. You tell them the darkest part of your life. You tell them that your loved one lost their life so tragically, and abruptly. Just know, they won’t know what to say, they may look at you as though you’re making it up, or just lost in plain shock that something like that even happened. Don’t be offended. Like I’ve said before unless they’ve experienced it, they will be speechless. They even may feel uncomfortable, or awkward because they don’t want to say the wrong thing to you.

Life will go on. And that is that. There is no changing what happened. You have to find the strength and believe me, it may be very deep within you. But you will find it. You will learn to live again. But always know, they’re with you.


Someone who lost a loved one to murder