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JENNIFER BARNES

Under This Pressure, Under This Weight, I’m a Diamond Taking Shape: Life After Losing Loved Ones To Suicide

Jennifer Barnes’ Human Library Book title is Under this Pressure, Under this Weight, I’m a Diamond Taking Shape: Life after losing loved ones to suicide. Jennifer witnessed her father’s death by suicide at age 17 and lost both a close friend and a cousin by suicide at other points in her life. These events and their profound losses were painful to endure and require ongoing layers of healing. Resulting PTSD and anxiety are everyday battles.

The stigma of suicide made healing difficult. People walked out of her life when she was in the depths of grief because they did not understand or they kept their distance when they did not know what to say. She needed those people. And some said rude and terrible things about her father - comments born out of ignorance and fear. Jennifer feels passionate about addressing and eliminating this stigma.

She speaks with honesty, openness and deep compassion about her own experiences as well as suicide prevention and mental illness. She feels it is critical to shift the narrative to prevent others from ending their lives as well as to support those who have been directly affected when their loved ones die by suicide.

Yes, her story begins with profound loss, and it continues on with hope, faith, perseverance, and healing. She firmly believes that we are like diamonds - we can be under pressure at various times in our lives, but that weight forms us and helps us grow into something beautiful.