“Chandelier” singer Sia shared how positive messages from fans after the death of her beloved dog on Oct. 31 helped prevent a mental health crisis, validating how serious grief after losing a pet can be for so many people.
On Oct. 31, Sia shared on Twitter that her dog, Pantera, had died. “You were my first born furry and you saved my life,” she tweeted. “You’ll be sorely missed. It was the best sixteen years of my life.”
RIP pantera marvelous furler.
You were my first born furry and you saved my life.
You'll be sorely missed.
It was the best sixteen years of my life. pic.twitter.com/GJDh7qiNOS
— sia (@Sia) October 31, 2019
A few days later, on Saturday, Sia shared that losing her dog was one of her greatest fears because she didn’t think she would be able to cope with the grief and might experience a mental health emergency, but positive messages of support on social media helped her get through. She tweeted:
I figured I’d let you know that my greatest fear was pantera dying. I never imagined I would get through it without relapsing or joining him. The night he died, in the wee hours your messages and old photos helped me through it, sober and alive. You should know that. Thank you.
I figured I'd let you know that my greatest fear was pantera dying. I never imagined I would get through it without relapsing or joining him. The night he died,in the wee hours your messages and old photos helped me through it, sober and alive. You should know that. Thank you. ????
— sia (@Sia) November 3, 2019
Pets can become such an integral part of your life — they are family, friends and constant emotional support through life’s changes. Sia’s grief and fear for her mental health and sobriety are things many people experience when they go through a major loss like losing a pet. Mighty contributor Grace Priddy explained in their article, “The Difficulty of Grieving When You Already Have Depression“:
Losing a pet you love is always hard. It’s often harder than people may think. The loss can come in many different shapes and sizes, but the bottom line is that a creature you loved is gone. In this particular shape and size of grief, I’m deeply affected, as I loved my cat very much and he became a source of comfort during my depression and anxiety. …
I now see there is a difference between typical grieving and grieving with depression. When you already feel like the world is a dark and lonely place, losing something you love makes the world darken to pitch black and you can feel completely alone. It’s adding an external weight on top of your internal burden caused by mental illness.
If you’re struggling with the loss of a pet or grief, reach out for support from those you love, just like Sia found comfort in old photos of her dog and supportive comments online. And if you are experiencing a mental health crisis and need immediate support, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741.