Grief support for all coping with the loss of a child

Share your story and connect with others who are coping with the death of a child.

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My name is Jackie raney and on March 24 2006 my youngest son ,best friend was picked up from the safety of his home and took to who was suppose to be his friend home and was shot to death. I received the dreaded phone call around 4:30AM in the morning with the words that "little Joe is dead" It will be 3 years this year and is just like it happened today. I have 2 other children and a husband of 35 years and I love them dearly but losing that child took my life, my soul, my heart, and my joy. I feel like I'm the living dead and no one knows it but me. I can't let him go, I want let him go. I think about him night and day and all the hours in between. I just want to crawl in the grave with him. Everyone in the family said that he was always the better part of us, he was the type of person who always looked for the good in everyone. He would literally give you the shirt off his back. He loved God, children animals and was too forgiving an neive about the world. I want him, I want him! My eyes are dead there is no joy. How can I live the rest of my life without him!
I SAY THE SAME THING,MY SON GOT SHOT BY HIS FRIEND ON OCT 7TH OF 2006 AND THERE IS NOT A DAY GOES BY THAT I DONT THINK ABOUT HIM,AND NOW THAT HE WAS SUPPOSE TO GRADUATE THIS YEAR THINGS ARE COMING IN THE MAIL FOR HIM,AND THAT BROUGHT TEARS TO MY EYES.HE WAS ONLY 16.MY HUSBAND ALWAYS SAYS GET ON WITH YOUR LIFE BUT I TOLD HIM I CANT.I HAVE TO OTHER CHILDREN AND WE SIT AND TALK ABOUT HIM BECAUSE THATS THE ONLY WAY THAT THERE PAIN AND MINE WILL HEAL SOMETIMES.TODAY WAS THE MAIL THOU WITH NATIONAL GUARD.I CALLED THEM UP AND SAID TO TAKE HIM OFF THE MAILING LIST HE HASNT BEEN HERE FOR 2 AND A HALF YEARS.IT IS HARD FOR ME.I DONT KNOW HOW OTHER PEOPLE DO IT.WHEN THEY GET SOMETHING AND IT IS SUPPOSE TO BE FOR THERE SON WHEN HE OR SHE GRADUATES.WELL I HOPE YOU WRITE IN A JOURNAL AND LIGHT A CANDLE,GO TO THE CEMETARTY ON HOLIDAYS AND BIRTHDAYS I MAKE HIS FAVORITE FOOD AND A CAKE WHEN IT IS HIS BIRTHDAY AND TAKE IT OUT TO THE CEMETARTY.I GO TO SUPPORT GROUP BECAUSE I NEED IT REAL BAD ESPECIALLY NOW THAT GRADUATION IS ABOUT TO COME AROUND THE CORNER.WEL;LL THANKS FOR LISTENING AND WRITE MORE THIS HELPS WHEN YOU KNOW SOME ONE ELSE GOES THROU THE SAME THING,IT HELPS ME.THANKS KRISTI
Hi Jackie,Oh how I know the feeling. Jackie I did'nt get the chance to say goodbye to Kris. This son,well I had three kids two boys and one daughter. Kris was my youngest child,he was my loving child. Much compassion and concern for anyone or anybody. Kris was our peace maker for the family. He was the role model for the young men in our family. Everyone looked up to Kris. Oh Jackie I miss that child so much. He would call every morning and nite. Hey Ma,what you cook or how to cook this or that. He loved to kiss but I was not a kissing person. I would say gone boy because I don't know where you lips been. He would give me this big bear hug,throw me on the bed and kiss me. Jackie I never in the whole wide world thought Kris would be gone. I still cry,my heart still aches with pain. I said if money would get him back I would rob a bank or get a loan to get him back. But Jackie I know the Lords will must be done. Also I know the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. But I just miss him so much. Some people says it OK to grieve,some says it is not right to grieve. I do know the Bible says rejoice when going out the world and cry when one come into the world. But this is so hard. Jackie this is my second son I had to burie. My first son and my last son. It hurts so much. April is just not a month for me. My Mom and Kris death was on the same day,the time one minute apart. My Dad april and burried on the 9th the same day my Mom and Kris died on @ 02:41 and )02:42 AM. So I am a little down in spirit now,It hurts and I think if I could just see him it might ease the pain a little. I wish Jackie that I can get that last kiss one more time like you did. My grandsons they miss their Dad so much. Little Kris he is 9 now and it hurts him so much to see his cousins with their Dad that he sits and cry wishing that his Dad was here. This is one reason that I ask God for strength so that I may be able to help them through this difficult time. kris was a New Orleans Firefighter and a family Dad. When you see Kris,you would see the family with him. He was a great Dad,son,cousin,uncle,fiance and nephew. Everyone loved Kris so much. He had that great smile that you would never forget. Just like on his picture he kept that smile. Jacke now we will pray with each other. We need a lot of strength to go on with our lives. My daughter she tries to take up where Kris left. She would call me at least 3 times a day. Sometime we would just breath on the phone together. My oldest son he said that he could not take it anymore in New Orleans,so he moved to Atlanta,Ga. He was a EMT for the city of New Orleans. He and Kris would most of the time would be called on the same run or calls together and the fellows would say let the brothers work together. They made me so proud of them. Now I have no Firefigter and no EMT. But I know God Had a special job for Kris in heaven. Ricky my oldest now sing with this Gospel Group name Harold Holloway and Co. I might be going to the Stella Awards. That would be something to make me happy. But Jackie I will be praying with you.....Elaine
Elaine I had 2 sons and a daughter our experiences are so similar my heart breaks for you, but I will be praying for you and your family. My oldest son Patrick lives in California and is married with my first grandchild, a boy and when I look at him my husband say's that's the only time my eyes light up. My Joe was his brothers best man at his wedding that was the last time he saw him. My daughter is more like her father they don't like showing emotions in fornt of people. My Joe was very loving he was about 6'3, 300lbs mostly muscels he played football throught high school and had a football scholarship to college. I almost lost my oldest son the year after Joe died he had taken some pills and dranked a bottle of liquor. If his neighbor had not found him and rushed him to the hospital I don't know what I would have done. I probably wouldn't be her talking to you. Thank God for his intervention, His grace and mercy and saving my last son. I try not to think about it and he went to counciling and is back in church. I greived so hard I had expected my heart to give out, sure enoung last year I became very ill. May of 2008 I was rushed to the hospital and as soon as I got there I went into respiratory failure, had a heart attack, with puemonia, kidney failure, liver failure temperature of 105 degrees, stop producing red bllod cells , stop producing platelets, could not walk or stand on my own, could not eat, I was on kidney dialysis, too much huh. The doctors told me that I would not make it, however they did not know I knew God and that my mother, other family, co-workers church member and my pastor who by the way was there often praying and anoiting me with oil all knew God. God saved me! I spent 2 months in intensive care when I went hom they still did not have a diagnosis as to what brought all of that on, It did not matter to me because God ended it. I lost 50lbs in 2 months time , had to learn to eat and walk all over againg but after my release from the hospital in 2 weeks I was back at work fully healed.God is still granting miracles today! I sometime wonder why God saved me and not my Joe. Well I have over burden you enough for one day maybe even a month. To all of you who have lost someone especially a child may the peace of God surround you and me until we see our love ones again.
I was so touched by your experience. My grandmother has lost three kids in two years and has another fighting cancer. She lost two daughters one of which was my mother within 5 months of each other. My mother suffered from many ailments after a heart attack in 2000. Many times the doctors told us to prepare ourselves for the end and my mom would say that she wasn't going anywhere because God wasn't done with her yet. She lived 7 years on dialysis and the last two years of her life with 25% heart function. She was finally diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and died peacefully the day after she was told, just like her brother did. I believe that God saved you because you have much more to accomplish on this earth. My grandmother wanted so badly to die when she lost her first child, but after awhile she told me that God did things on his own time and that she accepted the fact that her son had accomplished his mission on earth. She said our children are on loan to us from God and that when he needs them he collects his children back and that we the parents were blessed by God to have had them. I do not think that you have burdened anyone today but you have spread the good news that God is alive and well and performing miracles.
Oh Jackie,I don't believe it in 2007 I had a anuerysum after Kris death in April 2006. I was driving with three of my grandkids in the car going to New Orleans. I was driving on the I-10 I felt a little tingling in my forehead. I told the kids oh that felt funny,they responded saying at the same time what ma ma. Than look like the sun was coming down and everything was turning black. I told the kids that I had to pull over. Thank God a state tropper was riding behind me. He said that I was trying to get over but didn't make it. I hit five cars and three card hit me than I hit the bridge. No one was hurt and my grand kids all was fine. When they rush me to the hospital and took CT Scans the results was that I was bleeding in the inside of my head. I had a brain aneurysum and stayed in intensive care for 11 days. The Dr.said that I was lucky, But I knew that I was blessed. I knew Jackie that after losing everything with hurricane Katrina in 2005 and than losing Kris in 2006 it took a lump out of me. I was so depressed. I didn't cry at Kris funeral because I had to hold up for Kris two sons,my daughter 5 months pregnant and they were so close,than my older son and Kris fiance. So Jackie someone had to be strong and that person was me. I don't really remember the funeral because I had not accepted the idea that Kris was dead. I thank God that my kids had the funeral video. This is the only reason how I know what happened and all that was mentioned about Kris. Jackie you should take the time and do a Memorial Site for your daughter. I did one for Kris and I enjoy going on the site being able to talk to Kris like if Kris is sitting right next to me. It is some what of a healing for me. Also I get to tell him whats going on with family which I know he knows already,but I just feel good telling him about everything. Jackie don't ever feel like you are a burden this is what this site is for to help each other. When you can't talk to anyone else. When some don't understand,when some have never been through what we have. It brings tears to my eyes just thinking about all the hurt and pain that we feel. They just don't know. They can't even imagine how we feel. They won't know unless it happens to them. Than they can say I know how you feel. Jackie,Kristie and myself,we are parents with three guardians angels looking down on us and smiling saying look at our Moms. Asking God to protect us and give us that inner peace,becasuse they are alright. They are in the LOVING ARMS OF GOD.....Elaine
Oh my God it is so good to be able to talk to people who understand the devastation of losing a child. When I accidentally found this cite today It was like a light coming on for the first time in 3 years. My husband and I didn't graduate from collage but we have worked hard and manage to put 3 kids through college to give them a better start in life than we had. We rasied them to treat people according to their individual character and not be concerne with how people look on the outside. We rasied them to know and love God and to be responsible people and productive to society. My baby was in college doing all the things society say we are suppose to do, tutoring kids at his church, looking out for the neighborhood kids, good to his grandparents and all his family. When my other children went away to school he wouldn't go anywhere he couldn't lay his eyes and hands on me everday. We kissed good bye and he would come in and get on the foot of my bed and mess with my feet until I ran him out. How could something so terrible happen to my Joe? I have screamed so I thought my heart would break right out of my chest, and almost suffered a break down. If it wasn't for my beliefe in God and the comfort of my husband I would not be here. I have thought of just going to sleep but I would not do that because evrything I say about my beliefe in God would be a lie. He didn't get a chance to marry or have children, my child was only 26 years old. I have never seen my husband cry and for a while I was beginging to become angrey because I thought to myself he must didn't love our child the way I did. I can see how parents can break up after they lose a child but I'm glad I realized before it was too late that everybody have to deal with the loss in their on way. I wanted to know why everyone else was not falling a part like I was. I still have not accepted his death, I know he's gone but my heart consitantly reaches for his big silly grin and the feel of his face. I don't have anyone to talk to about my child so don't be supprised if I come to you all for the understanding only you all can give.
Hi ms. Jacquelyn.
My name is Tiffany and I too kind of found this site very much by accident, and it has helped me about as much as anything in my life. I loss my eldest child Elijah Anthony Kay Wheatley in november to a drug overdose while he was supposed to be in my father's care. I get so mad because of all the circumstances. I had a terrible upbringing, and I reached out to children services alot to try to give my kids a chance. Now that my son's gone, what was meant for good has now turned into a nightmare. But I havent given up yet because Im saved, and I genuinely believe that as much as it hurts, even to admit it, everything is in God's perfect order. That I cant give up until he sounds my last breath. I want so much to shape my daighter's life towards something better. Sometimes I feel like why were we put here to just have our lives turn out like this, but I have to look at all the poor decisions that I have made. I have learned that you cant use God and faith. When things are bad, you know that God is real, but when it is good you are doing well by yourself. He will punish you. he will punish you for making a confession of faith, and then dining with phillistines.(not meant for you, this has been my lesson.) We feel the most drastic loss when we lose our children, but I have been trying to see it through God's eyes. We read the Good Book to learn how to live, but he is steadily writing our story based on how well we submit our free will. I had to honestly search myself and stop saying that I was too perfect for all the hardships that I was going through. Maybe I dont do the obvious sins, but I dont attend to my ministry the way that I should either. Thats more crucial to God than a drunkard not drinking you know. Im guess Im just saying that God is the author. Just the same as noone is going to tell you how to arrange your house, we cant question how God orders his. I sometimes feel like what does any of us really believe. I think of how angry I get sometimes at the circumstances of my sons death and people seem like they are just moving on. Then I think of the word. Arent I making a liar of God when I seek vengeance, when I cry just because I feel like crying. We shouldnt ever want evil to outweigh the good. Maybe now is a good time to fill those hours that you used to joke with your son with a class or a hobby. Dwelling on losing it and staying sad, yeah you could do that. But if the word does say rejoice in season and out, isnt it sinful to lose it. Besides, what will that add to your life? Your son did not leave trying to die. Whatever the circumstances of his death, he passed away. The same with mine. Should we now die to live with them? I do not think so. That is a perversion of the gift of life. In accepting that him dwelling with you is no longer God's will. I would say remember him as you will. I made a website for my son: http://memorialwebsites.legacy.com/elijahbah/Homepage.aspx.
and I am also writing a foundation to help those that are struggling with the isssues that plagued our young family. But what are we saying to one another, when we perpetuate grief. What are we saying to our faith, when we speak the Word of life than say, "but I feel"...... it's contrary. That glorifies the enemy, not the Lord. I just feel like it is not only disrespectful to the confession of faith, but also to my son's memory to give into misery and then call it remembering my special little boy. This is the journey. Dont let the enemy use confusion to stagnate you. Everyday is a new glory. How can you embrace the new glory of today? Respect God's mind, and try not miss out what he has for you holding on and trying to understand everything.(boy am I talking to myself) Charity beareth all things. believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 1 Cor. 13:7.
Hi Tiffany, Elaine I speak about the emotional and physical pain we suffer when we lose someone we love very much and even though we know what God's word is, we are human. God knows our heart and He knows our human weakness and he forgives us and carries us when we are at our lowest points in life. No one wants to accept the fact that their love one is gone and it takes time to force yourself to remeber that God is in control and He is perfect love. He loves us as well as our love one who is no longer with us physically but always with us in our heart and memories. It was just so good to talk to others who understand the pain and could offer encouragement to each others. I love my other son Patrick, and daughter Kim and my husband Patrick too much to leave them willingly and the rest of my family. God is in charge of when I leave and until then I have to find the courage, faith and strength to seek His will for my life. Since God has spared my life so many times I know He has a plan for my life and I can't let satan defeat me by planting ideas that without my son Joseph, life is not woth living. So yes there are time I vent, scream, cry and long for his presence in my life, but I carry him everywhere I go in my heart. Joseph was a very sweet person and I never knew anyone who didn't like him, that's why everyone askeds the question who would want to hurt Joe. I don't hate the young man who met my son at college, I should but God won't let me. I use to tell him when he would come and pick my son up to not let anything happen to him and he would reply" mama you know I'm going to take care of Joe. My son use to call that person's mother mom too. I guess I just don't understand how something like this could happen to my Joe, to us. My mind goes to where he was killed and I knew he was scared whe he was dying because he didn't die immediately, I wish I could have gotten to him before he died so I could have held him and reassured him that it wa ok to rest. Joseph loved everyone in his family and he was the peacemaker of the family and everyone relied on him. He never let anyone down, we all counted on his kindness. Even from the time he was a little boy he would bring me flowers they would be all squeezed together and when he became a young man he would bring me flowes for occasions and sometime just because he loved me.
Our family goes on but the light don't burn as bright as it use to. In the throughs of one of my crying episodes these words came to me and I wrote them down and sent them in as a poem dedicated to my son.
MY HEART IS SEARCHING

WHERE IS HE

Where is he who forces my heart to travel down thoughts of memories.
Searching for yesterday’s smiles, times remembered by the
eyes.
Where is he whose arms are stretched out to hold the essence
of my soul.
Where is he who leaves my heart searching for flowers held
tightly offered up
With the expectation of the connection to be made.
Where is he that leaves my heart surging and seeking the
private thoughts of places with the sweet taste of recognition.
Where is he who’s eyes lock, the smile connect, which brings
understanding of the silence hanging between us.
Where is he who tested my patience, but never my love.

HE IS WITHIN MY HEART

MOTHER 11/2006
HELP ME DEAR LORD TO WORSHIP

HELP ME DEAR LORD TO WORSHIP
YOU AND TO GIVE YOU ALL THE PRAISE
HELP ME TO KNOW WHEN THINGS
ARE BEYOND MY CONTROL
AND TO EXCEPT THEM WITH THE FAITH THAT
YOU ARE IN CONTROL OF EVERYTHING.
HELP ME TO BE STRONG AND TO CARRY ON
KNOWING AND ASSURED THAT YOU CARE
FOR ME AND LOVE ME BEYOND WHAT THE
WORLD OFFERS.
HELP ME TO BE STRONG AND TO
LET YOUR WILL BE MY WILL AND
TO GIVE YOU ALL THE PRAISE
AND GLORY YOU DESERVE
AS THE TRUE AND ONLY
LIVING GOD
Author:Jacquelyn Raney 03/06/09
I CAN RELATE TO YOU BECAUSE I LOST A GRANDSON HE WAS MURDERED IN OCTOBER, 2007 THAT'S MY DAUGHTERS SON AND I HURT SO MUCH FOR HIM AND IT HURTS SO MUCH TO SEE MY DAUGHTER'S PAIN AND I CAN'T MAKE IT GO AWAY SHE ALSO WORKS AND SOMETIMES CAN'T GET OUT OF BED THAT PAIN WILL ALWAYS WILL BE IN OUR HEARTS. MY HEART GOES TO ALL THAT HAS LOST A BELOVED ONE.
Rose said:
I lost my 32 year old nephew to a drug overdose Jan of this year. He was a beautiful man, an athelete, a son, a brother, a grandson and a friend to many. His death has left our family reeling. He is the son of my sister who I am very close with. I have been very supportive; helping in anyway I can. She is amazing to me. Going thru life, working, going to support groups, church and family are important. My problem is that I am grieving the loss of her son more than the loss of my nephew. Does that make sense? I have a 25 year old son and I keep thinking to myself, how can she cope? I can't imagine what she is going through but somehow my own grieving transfers to my own life and my fear of losing my son. Is this normal? I have been reading articles and blogs about grieving and I see myself in many of these articles. Yesterday I booked a trip to see my son, he lives out of state, and the minute I booked it I started to cry; a deep, mourning cry. I have had therapy and was using my tools and understood partly why I was crying, but I was surprised by my reaction; instead of being happy (which I was deep down) I was very sad. I know part of it is feeling guilty; feeling guilty that I can see my son, call him and be with him; not like my sister. I just can't imagine what she is going through. Has anyone experienced this? Any help you can give will be appreciated. Thank you.
HI MARGARET,I FELT THE PAIN LIKE IN JANUARY OF THIS YEAR WHEN MY SON THAT DIED HIS FRIEND DIED THIS JANUARY AND I FELT THE PAIN WITH THE PARENTS,I KNEW WHAT THEY WERE GOING THROU.THERE ISNT MUCH BUT YOU KNOW YOU YOUR SELF SHOULD GO TO SUPPORT GROUP WITH YOUR SISTER,THE REASON WHY IS I WENT TO THERAPY AND IT DIDNT DO ME ANY GOOD I FOUND A SUPPORT GROUP THAT PEOPLE KNOW WHAT YOUR GOING THROU AND WHEN YOU TALK THROU IT THEY KNOW.SORRY FOR YOUR LOSSES.YOU WILL PROBLY FEEL THE LOSS TO IF YOU WERE CLOSE TO YOUR NEPHEW.BECAUSE HE WAS PART OF YOU TO.I KNOW THE FEELING I THINK MY MOM AND DAD HAVE,I MADE A TRIP TO THE CITIES FOR MY DADS BITHDAY PARTY IT WAS GOOD BUT I FELT LIKE I LEFT MY SON HERE AND WASNT COMING BACK EVERYONE ASKED IF I WAS ALRIGHT I FELT THE TEARS COMING DOWN BUT THAT WAS ALRIGHT.IF YOU CAN GO TO A SUPPORT GROUP WITH YOUR SISTER IF YOU LIVE CLOSE BYE EACH OTHER.YOU CAN HELP HER OUT BY BEING THERE AND SHE CAN HELP YOU OUT TO.WELL TAKE CARE AND I HOPE YOU DO GOOD IF YOU DO GOOD.KRISTI

Margaret said:
I was so touched by your experience. My grandmother has lost three kids in two years and has another fighting cancer. She lost two daughters one of which was my mother within 5 months of each other. My mother suffered from many ailments after a heart attack in 2000. Many times the doctors told us to prepare ourselves for the end and my mom would say that she wasn't going anywhere because God wasn't done with her yet. She lived 7 years on dialysis and the last two years of her life with 25% heart function. She was finally diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and died peacefully the day after she was told, just like her brother did. I believe that God saved you because you have much more to accomplish on this earth. My grandmother wanted so badly to die when she lost her first child, but after awhile she told me that God did things on his own time and that she accepted the fact that her son had accomplished his mission on earth. She said our children are on loan to us from God and that when he needs them he collects his children back and that we the parents were blessed by God to have had them. I do not think that you have burdened anyone today but you have spread the good news that God is alive and well and performing miracles.

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