Taking the Next Step: Get Real Retreat
Kelly sought help from Dr. Phil because she couldn't let go of guilt after her father killed himself. Here's what she had to say on the show:
My name is Kelly, and I'm here because I blame myself for my dad's suicide, because I feel like I was his confidant, and I gave up on him and wasn't there for him at the very end. It's been several years but for some reason, the guilt gets worse. It's like I'm stuck in that grieving process of just being mad. I just need some peace.
My dad told me that he was very suicidal, and very depressed and confided in me. I guess he thought he didn't have anybody to talk to. And I spent the next two weeks with him, and there at the very end, he was calling me all of the time, and I got to where I wouldn't answer his phone calls anymore. He was just getting on my nerves.
He shot himself. He left a note, and it didn't say anything to me. And I feel like he owes me so much more than that. It makes me mad. I'm really, really mad. It absolutely consumes my life. The last conversations that we had consume me. When I went downstairs and saw what he had done, it consumes me. And it's been six or seven years. I work three jobs just to stay busy. I just figured I wouldn't be so mad anymore.
Kelly gives an update since the show:
Growing up, my family was very normal. There was no addiction, parents never divorced and both parents were very loving, and supportive and involved in everything that I did. My dad was an amazing man with a heart of gold. A few years ago, my dad battled depression for just a few short months, and he did the unthinkable and committed suicide.
It wasn't until after Dr. Phil's Get Real Retreat that I realized that the pieces of my puzzle can be put together again. I can and will survive what I thought would be a battle that would last a lifetime. Dr. Phil taught me that it was so important to write and to keep a journal. About six months after the Retreat, I decided to write a letter to my dad. I poured out my heartache, anger, self-incrimination and guilt, purging all the secrets of my soul into this one letter. When I finished, all I knew was that I felt cleansed and freer than I had for a long time. That is when I decided to have people go on this journey with me and join me on this unremarkable bridge of recovery.
I know that my purpose now is to help people write. It may be a letter to a loved one, a letter of apology, a letter to a long-lost friend or simply a letter to yourself. I have had people tell me that they are not writers, and I wasn't either, but it's very possible with very little guidance. That is my purpose now as I strive to be a better person. To overcome my fears and my guilt is to help you write. I want to connect with people and let them know that pieces of their puzzle can be put together again. I challenge you to reconnect with your soul. Go explore your wonder, love yourself and live life abundantely.