It is not every day that an obituary ends up going viral, but in a world that is dominated by social media, more and more people are using them as a means of getting certain messages out into the world. When a 15 year old girl from Pennsylvania by the name of Sadie passed away recently, her family decided to speak out on the circumstances that surrounded her death.
While most families who lose a child to suicide will do their best to speak around the topic when they write the obituary, this family decided to face it head on. They did not dance around the issue one bit and the document even begins by saying that Sadie took her own life. They did not wish to dilute the message by speaking in generalities and we applaud their courage.
They let the world know that she had chosen to hang herself. It is hard for anyone to fathom how a child so young could become so troubled and even though Sadie had sought counseling and began to take medication, these remedies provided her with very little of the precious relief that she sought. Her young soul simply could not bear the torment.
Her family dynamics are very unique, as most of her immediate family members are not related to her by blood. The obituary goes on to call out the bullies who were responsible for diminishing her self worth. These bullies are urged to change their ways and to reconsider their actions. In addition, they were told that no ill will has been held against them.
We cannot begin to imagine how difficult this obituary was to write and we commend this family for their gut wrenching honesty. This story provides a crucial reminder of the importance of stamping out all forms of bullying once and for all. All bullying does not have to be physical and you simply never know the emotional toll that you are putting someone else through with your taunts.
Teen suicide is something that takes place all too often and when we do not teach our kids about the importance of being kind, these are the types of things that can happen. We send our deepest condolences to this family and will keeping them in our thoughts and prayers. By giving a deeper meaning to their child’s suffering, they are giving a voice to the voiceless.
Here’s an excerpt from the social media post:
Miss Sadie L. Riggs, 15, of Bedford, took her own life on Monday, June 19th, 2017.
Sadie was born in Bedford on December 4, 2001. She is survived by her father, Eric Riggs and step mother Alicia Smith of Bedford and her biological mother, Beverly (Dodson) Riggs of Hopewell and by her motherly aunt, Sarah Smith, with whom she resided.
Sadie was a member of the Solid Rock Christian Fellowship Church in Bedford. She played softball and loved reading, drawing and music. Sadie was a sweet and loving girl and she will be greatly missed.
In an effort to debunk the rumors about Sadie’s death we would like to share this information. Yes, Sadie took her own life, she hung herself. It is hard to fathom that someone so young could be so troubled. Sadie was seeking help, she was in counselling and taking medication, but it was all too much for such a young soul to live with. If you take a minute and look at Sadie’s family dynamics you will see that a large percent of the people in her life were not related to her by blood but she was sent to us by God who knew this child needed a family. Sadie had a tough life and until a recent incident at school she handled everything life served her. For a young lady so excited about going to the High School things sure went terribly wrong for her. For the bullies involved, please know you were effective in making her feel worthless. That is all between you and God now, but please know that it is not to late to change your ways. Sadie’s death has taken us to dark places, we will stick together and protect one another as we try to make sense of this tragic loss. To all the bullies out there, I just want you to know that as much as we despise your actions never, ever do we wish for you to feel the paralyzing pain that engulfs our bodies, a pain so severe that it makes the simple act of breathing difficult or the guilt that leaves us wondering what we could have done differently-or that struggle to remember the last words we spoke…Our hearts are beyond broken. Sadie, it was a privilege to have you in our lives and we will always love you. May you find peace in the arms of God and may we all be kind to one another.
In lieu of flowers, the family of Sadie ask that you be kind to one another.