Showing posts from June, 2020

"Dads Hurt Too" - Remember Bereaved Dads On Father's Day

He may look strong on the outside, but he too has a broken heart. Sometimes, we neglect to realize in our society that Fathers hurt, just as much as Moms. When planning your Father's Day activities this coming weekend, don't forget to reach a caring hand to those Dads who have lost a child.  Sometimes, we forget that men hurt too, and they are usually suffering in silence, as they have been taught to hide their true feelings. When a child dies, people tend to swarm around the Mother, as they just can't imagine what it would be like to give birth to a baby, only to lose it somewhere down the line of life.  In the background, the man stands silently, as his heart is bleeding all over the floor, and no one turns around to notice.  They may get a pat on the shoulder, as condolences are whispered, but they too are sobbing uncontrollably, even though their cries for help are usually buried amid masculinity. Anyone facing the loss of a child knows how deep t

How Gratefulness Has Helped Me In My Grief Journey

I could look at the world and see all that is wrong, while I suffer in grief... ... Or, I could turn my attention to all that is good, and refocus my mind for a moment in time. When individuals are lost in grief, it is difficult to be able to focus on what is still positive in the world.  Grief takes you down a lonely path, that can be dark and fearful.  It can be immersed in negative thoughts that cause isolation. ... But grief can also become a time of great discovery.  When you are cast into the lowest depths of emotion due to the loss you are experiencing, the only way left, is to look up.  You may have spent months looking around at all the suffering, and you've plunged your entire life into a void.  Some people decide to remain in this stance indefinitely, while others try to crawl to the surface where the sun is still radiating, and life is good. It takes some effort to emerge from the cauldron of anguish, but once you begin on the ascent, you wil

The Hardest Question For A Bereaved Parent, "How Many Children Do You Have?"

"How Many Children Do You Have?" This was the worst question I faced when I was a newly bereaved parent. A simple question from a fellow stranger, who was just trying to  make "small-talk" and they come out with a loaded question that hits us like a brick. During my early days of child loss, I dreaded this question, every time I met someone new.  It could have been a casual meeting of shooting the breeze with a stranger in a line of people, or walking into a new insurance office just to get a quote... It was always the same type of dribble that scared me the most.  My mind was plagued with worry, as I sat there hoping they wouldn't ask me, in fear that I would burst out crying in the middle of our first encounter. In the beginning, I struggled with this question, as I wasn't sure how to answer or the alternative of getting into a whole explanation of why I say 3 instead of 4... is that right, or do I acknowledge the 4th and give a litt

When Grief Escalates At Bedtime

Many people that are suffering from the loss of a loved one will be able to distract themselves during the daytime hours due to regular routines, work, and hectic schedules. Nighttime can become a challenge for those struggling with the death of someone close to them. When you settle in for the night, your mind has an opportunity to begin wandering, as you are no longer bombarded by the activities of the day.  Perhaps, you've put the children to bed, or the pets are resting for the evening, and the house becomes eerily quiet... your brain begins to taunt you about the emptiness in your heart, and the pain of your loss. Often, when we are not being distracted, our minds tend to focus on everything that is going on in our personal reservoirs of experience.  We begin to replay episodes that are being stored within our unconscious awareness, as they rise to the surface.  This seems like a common occurrence, as the day drifts off into what should be a peaceful transit

When Grief Has You Running For Escape

It is easy to hide from the world... but is it healthy long term? When grief comes knocking at your front door, all you want to do is slink back into the safety of your home and lock the outside world away. When we are dealing with the death of a loved one, the external world continues to revolve through their regular routines, and pleasures while the grieving heart is leaking all over the floor of our homes. We learn that society is not too comfortable with the reality of loss, and many tend to shy away from the person who is falling apart inside the isolation of their retreat.  The emotions are intense and many find that their friends and family can't handle the turmoil of dealing with someone so out of control of their own reactions. The early days of dealing with the death of someone we love, leave us in a state of confusion, fogginess, and loathing because no one understands the devastation we are feeling.  These are truly non-judgmental aspects of walki