About Alive & Not Guilty

I started this blog to share my interest on the topic of “survivor guilt”, and provide information and resources to those who might be interested in the topic and how to deal with it. Please share your thoughts, experiences, and resources. I am just starting to wrap my hands around the issue and hope this information is of some help.

This is an area of personal interest that I have developed during my PhD studies in psychology that may be on interest to some of you. Many terminal illness survivors and caregivers may experience this in many different ways and it could be of benefit to be aware of its occurrence. I also survived the Sept 11, 2001 attack in the Pentagon and this prompted me to ask “why not me?” “why am I still here?” and ever since I have been living every day to make it count, to make a difference, and help others.

I have also seen how some great friends have been affected by this after losing loved ones or surviving a period of struggling with an uncertain future. They feel like they did not do enough and now are trying to compensate for it, or feel not worthy of making it though the challenge. That can be good and bad, as they may end up overextending themselves and their effort may backfire on them. I intend to conduct post-doctoral research on this and would like to include a competency at LIVESTRONG on how to help people that experience Survivor Guilt cope with it in a positive way.

Thank you!

Rafael Matos


4 thoughts on “About Alive & Not Guilty

  1. Susan Murphy

    Hi Rafael, I’m Susan, one of the CCC, (Cyclists Combating Cancer), and a nurse
    in Portland Oregon. One of our group is struggling a bit and the group is going back and forth with posts. One of us posted your blog as a resourch or info on survivor guilt and I wanted to let you know you are helping folks all over!!!!

    • Hi, Susan. I am glad this information has been useful. This is a very delicate condition. All we can do is lend a hand, provide counsel, and hopefully make a difference. All the best to you and your group.

  2. carol

    As teens my riend and nephew received miraculous healing after their parents were told they would die and had received the last rites. However my other friend, sister and dad died. My dad was a model citizen, uber dad, church elder, suicide line volunteer, boy scout leader and dad to my fatherless cousins. His beer drinking brothers ouived him by 16 years. My sister was a lot like my dad. We had 3 wedding since my sister died and she became a grandma. I used to wish dad were here for these celebrations. Now I wish sister were here. Lately, of all thing, ive been wondering if my sister is cold?!

    • Hi, Carol. I don’t think I understand what you mean in your last sentence. Could you explain a little? I think I am missing something.

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