When Alexandra Valoras committed suicide, her parents, Dean and Alicia, were completely blindsided. No parent ever plans to go through this horrible tragedy. Dean and Alicia had no warning signs leading up to their seemingly-happy daughter's suicide.
Alexandra was what some would consider the "perfect child". She always seemed content, had a great group of friends, a straight-A student and was making plans for her future. There was nothing to indicate that Alexandra was struggling.
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It wasn't until after her death, that Alexandra's parents came across journals that would change their perspective on depression forever. These journals were full of very raw, painful emotions that Alexandra never shared with anyone. No one knew the battle that was raging inside of this sweet, loving girl. As her parents began comparing what they viewed as "happy events" to the dates in the journals, they found that their daughter was not connecting in the same way that her outer expressions were displaying.
Parents Speak Out After Daughter’s Suicide
Now Dean and Alicia are speaking out and sharing their story in hopes that other parents will not suffer the same tragedy that their family has gone through. Already the couple have received cards and notes thanking them for speaking out and how it has helped others. These days, Americans have increasingly busy schedules, children are participating in more demanding extra-curricular activities as they work toward potential scholarships for college. But at what cost? In Alexandra's journals, she wrote, "I'm stretched thin". Are we allowing children to be just that — children?
Depression is often a hidden disease as those suffering try to mask it. Take the time to speak with your children, your grandchildren. Encourage them to find an adult that they trust to share their feelings. We pray for peace and comfort for the Valoras family. We truly appreciate their passion for helping others see the need to listen to those in the family and not be afraid to ask hard questions.
If you or someone you know are struggling, please seek help 1-800-273-8255
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