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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Tomorrow is the sixth anniversary of the passing of our 17 year old daughter. I thought by now the pain and sadness would ease more than it has. Although I am fortunate to have a large family, who are their to listen and help, I have always found it difficult to express my grief to them (I don't want to upset them). I have taken part in every support group available and have even facilitated a grief support group for parents through my church. The best I can do is pray for inner peace.
Good morning Cynthia, oh my how the heart longs to be healed from breaking over the loss of a child whom you nurtured and brought up even though it was for only 17 years. The loss of a child in some ways is more painful than the loss of a parent. Please feel free to come to our section called, "Losing a parent", There are lots of us there that will help you. Read our stories and respond to them if you can and we will help you through it. Be strong today and maybe we will see you soon, take care, Carlo
Dear Carlo, Thank you so much for your kind words, so eloquently expressed. My husband and I always go away on August 2nd, but I read you message the next day. The anticipation of that day is usually worse than the actual “anniversary”, but we like to go some place quiet, usually the ocean, and just take it easy. I will visit the “Losing a parent” section of Legacy. Our dad passed two-and-a-half years after Laura. Maybe my brothers, who were very close to my dad, would find comfort in this section as well. I will pass along the information. Again, thank you. Cynthia
Hi Cynthia, I know exactly how you are feeling. I lost my 17 year old son at Christmas in 1998. This Christmas was the 10 year anniversary of his death. I still cry for him almost every night, but he is in my thoughts and prayers every second of every day. Please feel free to express your feelings to me. My family also doesn't understand and tries not to speak about him to me, but I love to talk about him.
I have recently lost both my sons in a car wreck. My heart feels so broken nothing seems to make sense. To only be 40 any have to live the rest of my life without them seems unbearable. To live with this feeling of loss is almost like dying too. Everyone says I have to be strong for the two children my oldest son left behind his youngest was only 7 days old, the oldest is 18 months. The thought of my grandchildern never knowing what a great dad they had or funny uncle hurts so much. I just hope that with time the grief is more managable
I LOST MY SON IN OCT 7TH,2006 HE WAS ONLY 16 WHEN HE PASSED AWAY AND I DIDNT FEEL ANY PAIN AT ALL BECAUSE I WAS NUMB.AND TILL THIS DAY I LOST MY MIND SOMEWHAT,I ASKED QUESTIONS TO PEOPLE THAT I WENT TO THE DOCTORS OR SOMETHING WITH.MY FRIENDS ARE STILL CONCERNED BECAUSE I FEEL STRONG BUT I FEEL I AM A BURDEN TO THEM IF I CRY OR IF I TALK ABOUT MY SON.WHAT HAPPENED WAS MY SON WENT TO HIS FRIENDS HOUSE HIS FRIEND WAS CLEANING HIS GUN HE SAID AND HE THOUGHT HE TOOK ALL THE BULLETS OUT OF THE GUN,POINTED THE GUN AT MY SON AND PULLED THE TRIGGER,THE KID WAS ONLY 15,HE GOT PROBATION TILL HE IS 19.2,987RESTITUTION AND 200 OF COMMUNITY SERVICE,EVERY ONE ASK IF IT WAS A ACCIDENT AND I ALWAYS SAY I AM THE MOM AND I DONT THINK SO BUT YOU ALL BELIEVE WHAT YOU WANT TO.SO MY HEART GOES OUT TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILY AND I AM HERE TO TALK TO BECAUSE I NEED SOME ONE TO TALK TO.HOW LONG HAS IT BEEN SINCE YOUR SON?BUT I WENT TO SUPPORT GROUP AND THEY SAY TALK ABOUT THE DEATH OF YOUR FAMILY THAT HAVE BEEN GONE AND IT WILL HELP EASE THE PAIN AND I HAVE DONE THAT.AND IT HELPS.THANKS AND I HOPE WE TALK SOMEDAY.THANKS FOR LISTENING
Dear Kristi,
I am truly so sorry for your loss. I know what you mean about the initial response to learning that your child has passed. I have always believed the profound numbness many of us feel is the body’s natural reaction, preventing us from TOTALLY losing it. If one could really die of a broken heart, all parents whom loss a child would perish. My husband and I felt completely numb for many months. I had panic attacks so bad I couldn’t breath. Finally I had to take an anti-anxiety medication just to function. I didn’t even cry for six weeks. Of course once the tears started it was very intense. My daughter’s accident (her name was Laura) was her own fault – inattentive driving, but that wasn’t the case for your son. You must have (or perhaps still do) felt such anger. I too have been to support groups, grief counseling, and I even facilitated a support group for grieving parents at my church. I was a member of Compassionate friends also. These contacts helped, but they have never been able to ease the pain. My daughters accident was six years ago last Saturday. Today, August 6th was her funeral. I guess I thought I would have healed more than I have. I teach young children, so each day I get up and put on what I call “my face”. Thankfully I have a long commute to work so this gives me time to work on my smile and happy face. My students really do help me, but there are still days, about three or four times a year that I just can’t seem to get out of bed and put on that face. In twelve years I never called in sick, but since Laura’s passing I call in if I know I won’t be able to give the children the attention they deserve. I am here to talk to. Please keep in touch and take care.
THANK YOU VERY MUCH AND I HOPE WE CAN KEEP WRITING,IT HELPS WHEN I CAN TALK ABOUT THIS,YES MY SON WOULD OF TURNED 18 ON SEPT 12TH THIS YEAR AND MY FRIEND SHE HAS BEEN MY SUPPORT AND FRIEND THROU OUT THIS I WOULD OF NEVER ASKED FOR A BETTER FRIEND.I WORK AT A NURSING HOME AND WHEN MY SON DIED,I WENT BACK LIKE 2 OR 3 TIMES BEFORE I WENT BACK TO WORK THAT WAY THE RESIDENTS WERENT WORRIED ABOUT ME WHEN I CAME BACK,AND EASED MINE AND THERE MINDS THAT WE WERE OK.THAN I WENT BACK,MY FRIEND SAYS I AM A STRONG WOMAN,I DONT CRY AT WORK THERE IS A REASON FOR THAT IS BECAUSE ONE OF ARE NURSES AT WORK LOST HER HUSBAND TO A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT AND SHE DIDNT COME IN TO VISIT THE RESIDENTS BEFORE SHE CAME BACK TO WORK AND SHE WAS CRYING ALL THE TIME WHEN PEOPLE ASKED HOW SHE WAS,ME I DONT BECAUSE I DONT WANT THE RESIDENTS TO FILL PITTY FOR ME BECAUSE I AM SAD,SO I TAKE MY SONS BIRTHDAY OFF,I PUT UP A ADOPT A HIGHWAY SIGN FOR HIM,AND ALL MY RELATIVES COME UP THE WEEKEND THAT HE WAS SHOT SO I HAVE COMPANY AROUND SO I AM DESTRACTED BUT THIS YEAR THE DATE FALLS ON A TUESDAY 0CT 7TH SO WE ALL STAY HOME THAT DAY AND ON HIS BIRTHDAY MY SON SAYS HE CELEBRATES MY OTHER SONS BIRTHDAY BY STAYING HOME LIKE HE USE TO DO AND ME AND MY HUSBAND DECIDED TO LET HIM DO THAT,IF HE WANTS TO REMEMBER HIM LIKE THAT,I MAKE HIM A CAKE WE GO OUT TO THE CEMETARY AND SING HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO HIM.AND GIVE HIM SOME.WELL I WILL TELL YOU MY HUSBAND IS A TEACHER AND IT IS HARD FOR HIM TO BECAUSE HE DOESNT TALK ABOUT MY SON LIKE I DO,HE PLAYS WARCRAFT A GAME ON THE COMPUTER BECAUSE THATS WHAT THEY USE TO DO TOGETHER.WELL THANK YOU FOR LISTENING AND I HOPE WE DO KEEP IN TOUCH THANKS FOR LISTENING KRISTI
I lost my nephew to a farm accident on Feb 14th, four years ago. He was 17.He was killed in a chopper box while doing chores at a family members farm. I viewed his body at the hospital and couldn't believe something so horrible could happen to our Harley. He used to stay with me and my two children everyday when we lived near each other. He stayed with us on school breaks and holidays. He was like my own son and my childrens sibling. Everyday I used to tell myself to just keep breathing, because if I start to cry or scream I might not be able to stop. Now I try to make it through the day without crying in public. I feel like he is still here yet, in spirit. The worst part of it all is my son lost his brother and still has nightmares about it. My niece was 5 at the time and witnessed the whole accident until the helicopter took him to the hospital. She always tells me how she lost her best friend. Harley had just passed his test to go in the Army reserves. He was going to move in with my son and I in 7 months. Our whole lives changed the day he died. All our plans were changed. We sold our house and have moved to a bigger town. We have tried grief support groups to ease the pain. It really hasn't helped. I put his pictures back around the house about six months ago. It feels a little more normal that way.
Dear Mare,
Isn't it so sad, that after days and months and years, the pain we feel is still so fresh. It has been 6-1/2 years since we lost Laura, and yet yesterday coming home from work I had that feeling that comes over me all too often; the one where I feel totally empty and some other feeling that I can't explain, but I am sure you know. I think it is equivalent to having your heart torn from your chest (heart broken). Having seen your nephew after the accident must given you horrible flashbacks. There is no "moving on" when our young are taken from us. I know exactly what you mean when you say you just try to get through the day without breaking down in public. "Putting on my face" before I leave the house each morning is something I have learned to do because I teach young children, so I need to have a cheerful look. Thankfully, I find this a blessing, because if I did not have a reason to make a difference in the lives of others, I would not be able to face each day. My heart goes out to you, your children, and family. God bless you all, and know that many of us have you in our prayers. We all stand together in here, even though we aren't together physically, we are here in heart and spirit.

Blessings,
Cynthia
Dear Robbie,
Please accept my deepest sympathy in the loss of your sons. What sorrow and pain you must be feeling. Losing children is like dying ourselves because we have lost a significant part of who we are. The people who say you must be strong for your grandchildren are trying to find some way to comfort you, and I do hope you find some comfort and peace with your very young grandchildren. But remember to take care of yourself. Give yourself permission to grieve in whatever way you must, whenever you must. I want to keep this message brief, because I remember in those early days my attention span was short, but I do want to let you know that if you need anything I am here to help. I have many resources I can lend that may help you find some peace and comfort (I facilitated a grief support group for parents at my church two years after we lost our Laura in a car accident). My husband found some solace in Harold Kushner’s book, When Bad Things Happen to Good People. If you just want to vent your expressions, please feel free to write for I am here to listen. Take care of yourself. You are in my daily thoughts and prayers.
Cynthia
Dear Robbie,
I too am grieving over the loss of my daughter. She died November 20, 2006. I am suffering beyond endurance STILL.  I try to keep very busy on projects to keep my head clear. I have been on so much medication it's a wonder I am functional. As of last week, I am  off all medication trying to face the world all on my own. My head spins still with grief & sadness. I saw this blog today while trying to write on an obituary note. I am so tired of leaning on my friends and seeing analysts. My daughter was 38 when she died and has left behind two beautiful teenagers. I still don't know how to cope with living without my daughter. I have watched everyone else move on, or appear to have.   It is my turn, any help out there?

Cynthia said:
Dear Robbie, Please accept my deepest sympathy in the loss of your sons. What sorrow and pain you must be feeling. Losing children is like dying ourselves because we have lost a significant part of who we are. The people who say you must be strong for your grandchildren are trying to find some way to comfort you, and I do hope you find some comfort and peace with your very young grandchildren. But remember to take care of yourself. Give yourself permission to grieve in whatever way you must, whenever you must. I want to keep this message brief, because I remember in those early days my attention span was short, but I do want to let you know that if you need anything I am here to help. I have many resources I can lend that may help you find some peace and comfort (I facilitated a grief support group for parents at my church two years after we lost our Laura in a car accident). My husband found some solace in Harold Kushner’s book, When Bad Things Happen to Good People. If you just want to vent your expressions, please feel free to write for I am here to listen. Take care of yourself. You are in my daily thoughts and prayers. Cynthia

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