Chapter 3: Challenges you may face

Search for justice or revenge

I've been there
Susan wonders if the man who killed her son has atoned after 15 years in prison.(3:22)Video transcript
Susan shares about forgiveness.(3:22)Video transcript
Joanna speaks about how the offender's serving time in jail and an apology from the homicide police would lessen the weight she feels.(3:22)Video transcript

I get so mad when they call it an “accidental” death.

If you are grieving a death that was caused by someone else, you may want to see that person held accountable for their actions. You may have intense feelings of anger, revenge fantasies, or a need to see justice served.

If an investigation or trial is ongoing, you may find some of the questions or the overall process disturbing. Things can take longer than you would like or go in a direction that you didn’t expect.

What may help

  • Acknowledge the difficulties you’re facing, along with whatever feelings you have.
  • Look for ways to safely express intense feelings, such as anger. Consider physical exercise or activity, singing, writing, or drawing.
  • Allow yourself to take a break from your search for justice so that you can recharge and replenish your energies.
  • Working through these thoughts and feelings can be very challenging and can take a long time. Seek out local or online support from others whose experience may be similar. If available, a victim services program may also be able to help you.