When someone that you know online dies...

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  • .... how are you supposed to deal with it?

    I found out last night that a girl on a gaming forum that i post on died, and i have been crying ever since.

    She was 22 years old, from Sweden, and was hit and killed by a drunk driver on 3rd November. She died on her way to hospital.

    I'm not sure how i should be feeling. I didn't talk to her loads, but i found her to be one of the nicest people on there. She never said a bad word, and was always really friendly. I could also relate to her lots. We both had a keen interest in animal welfare, and it was nice to have someone else there who thought the way i did on a non-animal welfare related forum. She's been on the forum since 2005, and we spoke on a 'real' name basis.

    I'm just struggling to figure out where she's gone?? If that makes sense. She will never post on the forum, or reply to any of my posts again. And she was so reliable for that. And i hate how she died (wrong place at the wrong time).

    Am i stupid for being so upset, as i hadn't actually met her in person, or spoken to her in any other way except by posts and PM??

    I just feel so sad :(

  • There is no shame in feeling the way you do hun. You build up a friendship with someone online just as much as you do in 'real life'
    There are people on here that I haven't met but Im friendly with and would miss if god forbid anything happened to them.
    Take time to grieve as you would for any friend who you'd lost and don't be too hard on yourself xxx

  • :hug:
    There was a homeschooler that I knew quite well online who died a couple of months ago, and there's been a huge outpouring of grief by people who knew her online - we do become emotionally attached without ever actually meeting. I cried my way through the whole of the weekend I found out, and I still get a lump in my throat when I think of her.

  • Emotional bonds don't require that you actually meet someone. I don't think you're at all stupid for being upset.


    agreed, you've clearly connected with this girl and now she's gone. being upset is perfectly understandable :bighug:

  • Thank you for all of your replies. I'm glad to hear that how i'm feeling is to be expected. I was worried that i was just being too over-emotional, and that my boyfriend would think i was being ridiculous crying about it again today (although he'd probably never think that).

    I'm sorry to hear you've had a similar experience recently Shoshana.

    I'm guessing it's a combination of things that has upset me. If i'd heard a similar story on the news of someone i didn't know at all, i'd still be upset. Not to this extent, but that's what i'm like. It's just so tragic and i don't think it could have happened to a nicer person.

    Thanks again x

  • its not over emotional at all and even if it was so what? you had a bond with her and not having met her in the flesh doesnt lessen that bond. sorry to hear youre feeling so crap but if things like this didnt make you feel crap you wouldnt be a very caring or "human" person would you? big loves xx :hug:xx

  • :hug: :hug: You should deal with it how you think is best. Cry if you want to...Internet friendships can be just as strong as normal friendships...and well i know i give a shit a lot more about some people on this forum, even some i haven't met then some person i see sometimes at college...you have every right to feel what you feel :hug:

  • I known this to have happened a couple of times. There is the emotional bond there with that person so you have every right to grieve for this person in your own way.

    I have known that deaths on internet forums produce an out pouring of grief. If it makes you feel better and I don't know if it has been done already, start an obituary thread in that forum celebrating her life. Write down the things she has contributed to your life and that her memory would live on.

    Also :hug: to you.

  • i definitely don't think you should feel stupid for feeling how you do. there are a few people i've never met in person that even if i hear something bad happened to them, i feel quite sad for them. so, i would imagine if it was someone i felt a close connection to that i'd never met before and something happened that was tragic, such as their death, i'd end up crying myself and being really upset about it.

    i'm sorry you lost your friend, star lass.

  • So sorry to hear about this :hug: You're not wrong to grieve for her - what Atomik said is spot on.

    My boyfriend and I recently experienced something similar when an online friend died of cancer, so if you feel you need a chat about it just PM me :)

  • I'm so sorry to hear that :hug: I agree with everyone else that it's totally understandable that you'd be upset.

    The thing that occurred to me was that because you 'only' knew her online, I don't suppose you'll have a chance to go to her funeral. It seems to me that rituals are an important way of processing a loss, so I was going to suggest that you might like to come up with some sort of little ritual or ceremony for yourself that you can do. Someone suggested started a thread on the gaming forum for people to pay their respects - that might be a good one - or anything else that feels helpful to you - maybe writing or talking to her, or lighting a candle or something. Just a thought? xx

  • There was a young lad off another forum that i go on who died recently, on his 18th birthday as well. It was heartbreaking reading his last posts, all excited coz he was looking forward to going out, saying that he'd smoked his last spliff coz he was giving up...he asked me for some advice on a tat he was getting the day after coz he was finally old enough...so sad :(

  • i know how you feel at the min iv been away from this site for along time my grandad died in may and my mum died 5 weeks ago im going through so much so i know exactley how you are feeling people keep saying it will get easier but i have good and bad days and nights so i ts just time and i cant see a way through at the minute so i do know how you are feeling my mum died suddenly at 55 and i feel like im dreaming so my thoughts are with you lv indiagirl xxxxhugxxx

  • :bighug: As everybody else has said, there's no rules when it comes to emotions and you clearly had a good connection with the girl too. So you're allowed to feel sad :hug:

  • :bighug:to starlass and anyone else who needs one
    I'm still struggling with grief for someone I dont feel I have the right to 'miss' because we werent 'close' in real life but feelings are feelings and grief doesnt get proportioned out all neatly,it just hurts.

    And online is as real as any other friendship because yes theres physical space in between you but we're all real people at the end of the keyboards,making real emotional connections with each other,so its completely natural you feel the way you do.The tribute thread is a good idea though coz one of the hard things is not being able to talk about the person naturally the way you do about people who die that youve had a traditional relationship with and that can be very lonely.

    Be gentle with yourself and I'm so sorry youve lost your friend :bighug:

  • Thanks so much for the support everyone. I don't post here often anymore, and probably a few of you haven't seen me here before, so it's great that you took the time to post a reply. It's really helped. x

    justme, you're right, i didn't even find out she had died until 6 weeks after it happened. Her family and friends probably knew little of her online friends. It's a shame that we didn't get the opportunity to attend the funeral.

    Barefoot_Surfer, that's a lovely idea. There is already a thread though, in the clan internal discussion section of the forum. It's the thread informing us of her death, but i posted how much she will be missed, and also a link to a song in her memory, along with her photo, and a link to a post that she made saying how much she loved the song. I was going to send her an email so that i can talk directly to her, but decided to first send her an email begging her to reply and say that none of this is true (crazy i know), only to have that one bounce back on me. So i think i'll send her a PM instead.

    I've looked through all of her old posts, and she never missed a birthday thread. I saw her last birthday wish to me in April, which i'd actually missed until now. All of her posts about cats and how much she loved them, including pics of her new cat that she just got in August. Old conversations we had, and how she told me i should visit her in Sweden. Our shared love of Roxette! It's just unbelievable what's happened. I'm thinking of her family and friends, and their awful loss.

    i know how you feel at the min iv been away from this site for along time my grandad died in may and my mum died 5 weeks ago im going through so much so i know exactley how you are feeling people keep saying it will get easier but i have good and bad days and nights so i ts just time and i cant see a way through at the minute so i do know how you are feeling my mum died suddenly at 55 and i feel like im dreaming so my thoughts are with you lv indiagirl xxxxhugxxx

    indiagirl, thank you so much for your reply, but i cannot even imagine how you must be feeling. So much loss in such a short period of time, and people who are very precious to you. I do understand what you mean by the feeling that you are dreaming. It's so hard to get your head around that someone has gone and will never return. You're in my thoughts, please take care, and huge *hugs* to you xxx

  • thanks so much starlass i do feel as im dreaming and when i think il never see my mum again it hurts so much i have good and bad days thanks so much for your reply it gives me so much comfort you are in my thoughts my blessings and thoughts are with you too thanks and hope to talk to you in 2009 xxxx i love this site you never feel alone xxx

  • :angel:

  • No, you are far from stupid. You are human. I lost a very good online friend two years ago. We had never met, but we got on so well.
    I light a candle for her on her birthday and talk to her all the time.
    :bighug: to you.

  • I lost a friend on line a few years ago her name was Leah and she was 19 she had a pulmanary embolism and just dropped down dead. I went to her funeral tho I had never met her. I met her mom and we stayed friends. She kind of became my Leah. They were two peas in a pod. Then about two years ago my ex snapped my phone sim and I lost her number and I have been looking for her since. I think of Leah all the time and it pains me to think that her mom might just think I forgot about her. :(
    I had known Leah for about 2 years spoke everyday she was more like a pen pal we talked on the phone too it was a terrible shock when she died.