When someone takes their own life, society asks questions.
Many folks even declare that to end a life is selfish.
As an intuitive medium who communicates with souls who have passed on — including souls who’ve committed suicide — I want to share what I’ve come to learn about suicide from a spiritual perspective.
My hope is that by sharing what I’ve experienced and learned over the years, you’ll find a bit of comfort in knowing your loved ones and friends who took their own lives are still loving you from the other side.
THERE IS NO HELL
I’ve learned that taking your own life isn’t a sin and there is no “hell” in a fire and brimstone way. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. When you pass on, you are greeted by loved ones and guides who help you adjust to being in spirit/soul form sans a human body. From what I’ve experienced, this is true for all of us, no matter how we pass.
Sometimes confusion and fear set in (on a soul level) after one takes their own life. Like in the case of Matt, a teen who committed suicide and came to me in spirit for help, he just needed to be reassured that he wasn’t going to hell if he crossed into the light. His religion told him he’d burn in hell. I told him what I knew about the light: that once he entered it, he could come back and forth on a spirit level. That he was not crossing over into a fiery eternity. Thank goodness he believed me and moved easily into the arms of his loved ones on the other side. (NOTE: I share more about my time with Matt, and how he found me, in my memoir, LITTLE VOICES (Post Hill Press/Simon and Schuster).
From what I’ve learned as a medium, Earth is quite literally “earth school” — a place we come to learn and grow, and most importantly, love. We’re here as souls in human form to learn to love ourselves and others. It sounds simple, right?! But look at the way we judge and treat others. We’re masters at raising people up and tearing them down. And then dictating how everyone should live. The business of being human is messy, wonderful, heartbreaking, complicated, and believe it or not, purposeful. We even sign up for more of it lifetime after lifetime. It’s hard to comprehend with our rational human minds, but on a soul level, it makes perfect sense. After all, we’re souls having a human experience, not the other way around.
LIFE EXIT POINTS
From my experience talking with loved ones on the other side, we pre-plan possible life exits before our births in something called a soul contract. The exit points coincide with what we’re here to learn and do (earth school). From what I’ve learned, I don’t believe suicide is written into our soul contract; however, those who come into life to carry the weight of very heavy things have a much higher probability of committing suicide. I personally know multiple people who’ve attempted suicide but didn’t permanently exit their bodies because what they came to learn and do wasn’t finished. You hear this quite a bit in near-death experience stories, too. In short, if someone isn’t meant to exit at a specific point or via a suicide attempt, they won’t. The attempt will not result in loss of life.
If you know someone who deals with depression and anxiety, you know that it can become so incredibly overwhelming and dark that you’re unable to feel love for yourself, family or for life itself. And you’re overwhelmed with pain so deep that you just want to escape it any way you can. You’ve tried everything on the planet — therapy, pills, putting on a good face, hiding the pain — but nothing works. Many times, you think those you love will be better off without you.
WHAT A SOUL FEELS
A suicidal soul in a human body is in a state of unbearable despair. Pain, numbness, and sorrow make it impossible to feel love for self…for life.
A soul who committed suicide, and is now on the other side (heaven), CAN feel love again. They can look at their life, heal emotional wounds, and continue to love, protect, and guide those they left behind. There is no shaming, damnation, or hellfire. There’s only love and compassion on the other side.
Shouldn’t it be that way on this side, too?
As a woman who has lost friends to suicide and a mom whose daughter battled suicidal ideation after multiple concussions, I know first-hand that losing those you love (and/or the fear of potential loss) sends us into a tailspin of despair and grief. But shaming and blaming those who end their lives does not lessen the pain we feel. Having compassion and empathy for their journey—and their exit—does.
Little Voices is the true story of an ordinary woman’s unexpected psychic mediumship journey that uncovered buried secrets of sexual abuse in her own life and the lives of children who died long ago—and helped her escape the grasp of a seductive predator who nearly destroyed her. (Post Hill Press/Simon & Schuster/Blackstone Publishing (Audiobook)
This is one of my favorite reviews EVER!
I know what it's like to have two little ones at home. (It's been a long time, but I still remember!) I think my average was a book a year back when my kids were toddling about. Knowing that Hannah read Little Voices in 3 days is, well, MIND BLOWING and OH-SO-EXCITING!
Many folks who've gotten advanced reader copies have said they stayed up all night reading, but I figured it was because they knew me. Or they were stretching the truth a little, but the more this crazy book of mine gets out there, the more I hear this very thing.
"I couldn't put it down....I stayed up half the night reading."
Thank you, Hannah. Your interest in Little Voices--and your review—make me smile from ear to ear! <3 To say I'm grateful is the understatement of the year!
HANNAH'S BOOK REVIEW
"I finished this book in three days, and I have two small children...
(PAUSE TO LET THAT SINK IN.)
I mean, Moms, I know that you know how astonishing this is, right? I'm not sure I finished a book this quickly since before I had children. Sacrifices were definitely made: I stayed up way too late and skipped a few rounds of dishes to accomplish this feat; but I had to because I could not put it down.
It's nothing like anything I've ever read before.
-- Hannah of @survivaloftheSAHM
After I shared what happened this past week regarding a mass my doctor found on my cervix, I received a kind, supportive message from a friend of mine. Gretchen and I haven’t seen each other in years and we don’t talk regularly, but ever since we met four years ago at a party, I knew she was one of those special, soulful people that lights up every room she enters.
When Gretchen heard the news of the mass, she reached out asking if the doctor I mentioned that I’m seeing this week was the same one she saw for her hysterectomy. Indeed, he is the same doctor. She offered to tell me about her experience with him so I called her up and we spoke for an hour.
I never could have predicted what happened during the call.
While she told me that I’d unknowingly been paired with the best gynecological surgeon in town, she also shared that she, too, had endured childhood sexual abuse. And she endured painful cervical procedures. Turns out, she also suffered from polycystic ovarian syndrome (like me) for many years until her hysterectomy.
It seems what my grandmother (in spirit) and Jason (in spirit) told me about stored trauma in the body creating physical issues is pretty spot on. I never doubted it, honestly, but what are the odds that I meet someone with a similar journey and the exact same medical issues?
During our conversation, Gretchen mentioned her mother who passed away a year and a half ago. As I listened to her talk about her mom, I immediately felt Karen come into the room. Chills raced up and down the left side of my body—my sign that a spirit who has crossed into the light wants my attention. (When I feel chills up the right side of my body, I know the spirit has not crossed into the light. I share more about this in my upcoming book.)
I’ve been channeling spirit since I was 36-years-old, but most of the time I channel children in spirit. It’s rare for me to talk with someone about a deceased loved one (adult) and feel that loved one step in unless there is some connection to abuse, murder, sudden death, or suicide. 95% of the channeling I do involves children who are on the other side.
In my mind’s eye, I saw Karen’s outstretched arms holding a bundle of yellow daisies. When Gretchen finished talking about her beautiful mother, I told her what I was picking up—that her mom had just popped in and presented an image I felt strongly I needed to share. Gretchen thanked me for telling her what I saw saying that she related to the message, especially given the fact that Karen was an avid gardener. It’s where Gretchen got her love for digging in the dirt as well.
I never met Karen, nor did I know anything about her other than she succumbed to Alzheimer’s Disease, but I suspected she was an amazing woman given that she’s Gretchen’s mother.
“Kiersten, when my mom was alive, she was a marriage and family therapist who specialized in working with sexual predators. She even went into prisons and worked to help rehab pedophiles and sexual predators."
My jaw hit the floor.
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. No wonder she came through to me. I am a childhood sexual abuse survivor who has worked (as a volunteer intuitive medium) on cold cases involving children who were abused and murdered by pedophiles. I also unknowingly fell for a man who turned out to be an abusive malignant narcissist and sexual predator—one that I have a restraining order against. My story is full-circle, to say the least.
And now, here I was in this incredibly full-circle moment.
I couldn’t believe that we both worked to stop sexual predators. Of course, I don’t work the same way Karen did, but still, our mission is now and forever the same: ending sexual abuse. I applaud her efforts to do what I’m sure few dare to do. What an incredible warrior she was...and still is.
Shortly after Gretchen’s mom came and went, we talked a little longer about what I will likely face in my appointment this Thursday. Gretchen helped me feel at ease about the doctor we share, the process, the surgery, and the aftermath.
I am enormously grateful to these two incredible angels. Gretchen and Karen, you have touched my life in ways I can never fully express.
And you’ve shown me, once again, that even in dark times there is light.
Related: Nate's Story (Spirit Story) and TEDx Talk
As many of you know, I just finished writing a book about my journey from 2009-now. It's definitely a stranger-than-fiction tale but here's the thing -- it's all real. In fact, it was too real for me back when my intuition hit me over the head. I was terrified and didn't see the whole picture then, but I do now. And I wanted to share how intuition helped me survive and heal from childhood and narcissistic abuse.
I thought I'd share a bit of Chapter 2 where I share what happened when one amazing kid named Nate Pannell came into my life.
If you are looking for proof that intuition is real, check out this excerpt....
CHAPTER 2 – NATE & CARRIE
“Mom, do you remember the Pannell family in Defiance?” I asked while talking on the phone one day in 2010, the year my intuition kicked into high gear.
“Sure, I do—John and Denise, right? They graduated a couple years before you.”
“Yeah, they did. I don’t really know them but we are friends on Facebook. The strangest thing happened when I was mindlessly reading the feed today—I started to recognize that their son, who has apparently passed on, was in the kitchen with me.”
Silence filled the space where she was supposed to be thoughtfully commenting. I didn’t blame her. It’s a shocking statement to hear and this was all new to my parents. I’d been grappling with it all in the comfort of my own home with Scott and the kids, but this was a leap I hadn’t taken yet. I was telling my parents I was sensing things that maybe weren’t there. Crazy things that they didn’t have any experience with at all. The fear of judgment and ridicule was consuming me but I didn’t stop.
I went on to explain to my mom what I’d been dealing with for some time now and how messages from what could only be described as spirit were somehow being made known to me. And now, it was starting to happen when I scanned the Facebook feed. She listened supportively, not really knowing what to say as I continued relaying what happened that day.
I told her that while I was looking at photos of a memorial held for Nate, I heard his voice and saw flashes of scenes that he wanted to talk about. I felt him around me more than saw him as an apparition but one thing was clear—he was ready to talk. When I first started to recognize he was there wanting to communicate, I experienced chills up and down my body. I noticed they were predominantly on the left side of my body and made note of that, too.
I picked up my new tarot card deck for backup because I really had no idea what I was doing. I thought maybe somehow the cards would help. I was encouraged by my Reiki instructors to play around with tarot because it was a visual representation of what comes in intuitively. Truth be told, I wasn’t sure what I believed but I thought it was worth a shot. I pulled three cards and shockingly was able to finish deciphering the last message Nate was trying to share. It was for his brother. After I made sure I had all of the messages written down, he pled with me to pass them to his parents.
I sat frozen in my chair thinking about what just happened. The last thing I wanted to do was reach out to grieving parents who may or may not be receptive to me. Their family had been through so much already. What if I was wrong and none of it was real? What if they saw me as someone trying to somehow take advantage of their situation? I wasn’t asking for money or anything, of course, but still. I don’t know how I’d react if someone reached out to me this way. Finally, I rose from my chair knowing I needed time to think about all of it and bee-lined it for our bedroom. Sitting on the edge of the bed with my notes in hand, I knew I had a choice to make. For now, it was to hide what had happened and go about life as normal. Normal was easier.
After a minute or two of contemplation, I swiftly opened the front drawer of my bedside table and stuffed the messages inside. I knew I needed time, so I waited to be filled with courage and knowledge that what Nate was asking me to do was the right thing.
The courage came two days later in the form of a very quiet, calm knowing when I least expected it. I wasn’t even thinking about Nate until, out of the blue, peace came over me. I was still terrified but deep down I knew I had to try. Even if they slammed the proverbial door in my face. Even if I was going to be the laughing stock of my hometown after word got around. I gently pulled the paper filled with Nate’s messages out of the drawer and crafted a quick introductory message to his mom, Denise. I nervously hit the send button hoping that I was doing the right thing. And it was indeed exactly what was meant to happen.
It was the right thing. Denise responded kindly which started a back-and-forth exchange leading to a phone call and later on, an in-person meeting.
About a year after I shared Nate’s messages with his family, I asked John if he wouldn’t mind writing what the experience was like for them. He told me he would be happy to write it up.
A week or so later, John shared his account of their experience with me via email. As I read it, my jaw hit the floor. I had no idea the impact it made on his entire family. I knew from sitting with them that they greatly appreciated that I reached out to them, but I didn’t fully grasp how much it shaped the course of their lives.
I was in tears reading about the healing that Nate had facilitated from the other side. Of course, I knew what the whole experience did for me and I’m eternally grateful. Nate and his beautiful family helped me understand that what I was experiencing wasn’t just my imagination. It was very real and very important for all of us. I just had to have the courage to trust.
Written by John Pannell, Nate’s Dad:
"Almost four years ago, I was just surviving being a bereaved parent of a
child that has passed away. It was a daily struggle getting through a day without a total meltdown and the overwhelming feeling that I didn't want to live the rest of my life in the role of a grieving parent. It was in the midst of one of my many meltdowns that I remember my wife coming upstairs, in tears, telling me she got a message from Nate, our son that had passed away at the age of 13 from an AVM. I tried to listen to what she was trying to tell me, but it seemed Greek to me because I couldn't get past my own doubt in what had happened. She tells me that she got an email message from this lady in California about how strange it may seem, but she thinks she has a message for us from our son. If we were willing, we could give her a call.
Denise called her and spoke for almost an hour. Denise was trying to relay the information from the four pages of notes she took while Kiersten talked. The only comfort this brought to me was that for the first time since Nate's death, I had seen tears of joy versus tears of sorrow. Denise and Kiersten had kept in contact, I kept my distance. One day, I remember Denise telling me that Kiersten was going to be in the area and wanted to meet with us.
Out of obligation to Denise, growing skepticism, and just a dash of curiosity, I agreed to meet with Kiersten. My anxiety level that day was extremely high. I remember when Kiersten showed up at our house and sat down with us at dining room table. It was my wife, our younger son, Jack, my wife's aunt Sally, Kiersten, and myself. There was a lot of small talk and I listened intently trying to find what the catch was. Over the next three and a half hours, what I got were answers, hope, and explanations. I had questions to authenticity as to who Kiersten was and what were her motives were. I found Kiersten to be one of the most genuine persons I have had the pleasure of meeting. She spoke from the heart. She relayed to us information as it was interpreted by her. What I found was she spoke with a gift. Her heart was pure. Her interpretation spot on. She offered validation that was unquestionably accurate. She gave us peace knowing that our son was fine. Kiersten taught me that events that occur are not just coincidence.
Kiersten opened up a form of communication between my son and I that allowed me to go from being a grieving parent just existing to being a bereaved parent that is allowed to live. She has helped us by being a conduit for question and answer sessions, she has taught us what it means to look for the hidden meaning, most importantly, she gave us our youngest son back. You see, until that time, there wasn't much communication between him and his mother and me. I know a large amount of time that first night meeting Kiersten, she spent talking with Jack. I have never asked either one what exactly was said, but I can say whatever it was, it made a difference in a young man's life.
Meeting Kiersten and being open to her gift has not taken away the fact that we lost our oldest son. That is something we live with every day. Having Kiersten reaching out to us, opening herself up to us, putting it all out there, all for us and never asking for anything in return, has given us peace.
Kiersten, I know that my statement doesn't even start to do justice to what you have given us."
-- John Pannell
Nate has his own page on my website here.
Life has a weird way of taking you down roads you never thought you'd go. I've written about working on cold cases and and other types of police cases in this blog—something I never thought I'd do in a million years.
In fact, when I was growing up, I wanted to be an ice skater. This stuff was NOWHERE in my view.
I'm so grateful for the investigators who have taken me seriously (when I was guided to work with them in some way, shape, or form), and I'm so thankful I can now call them friends and mentors.
I just received this letter today from Detective Mark Pucci. I am forever grateful—not just for his endorsement but for his belief in me, and for his support over the past four years.
February 9, 2018
It was great to hear from you, and I am more than happy to provide you a with my personal endorsement, and I look forward to the time that we have the opportunity to work together again.
Kiersten and I got to know one another when we each volunteered to work on a missing person's case in the NYC area. I knew the minute we started talking on the phone that Kiersten was the real deal. As the case progressed, I was blown away by the amount of detail she shared; it matched what I had in my hard-copy file.
She was channeling all of this from 3,000 miles away without any tie to the case, or way to validate details. She had no stake in the case other than the drive to want to help her friend's friend whose loved one was missing. I have to say, as a retired NYPD Detective and the current Founder & Chief Investigator for: New York Private Detective Services, with over thirty years of crime solving experience, it is rare to find someone like Kiersten.
She is truly one of a kind, and I'm honored to work with her. I truly believe she has a "very big purpose in this life . . . e that will help many people globally."
All my best,