For many bereaved parents the relationship with their child goes on. It is common for parent to continue to talk to their child occasionally, or to feel as though their child is protecting them or sending them signs from time to time. Many bereaved parents also continue to celebrate special days, like their child’s birthday. Bereaved parents may find that remembering their child can bring them both comfort and pain.
If you or someone you know is grieving the loss of a child, these are some things that may help avoid complicated and/or traumatic grief.
- Talking about your grief and allowing yourself to cry may help you avoid feeling depressed or helpless for a prolonged period of time. As painful as it is, it is crucial to trust that your pain will start to lift if you allow yourself to feel it.
- Seeking support from family members, friends, colleagues, professionals and/or social support groups. The support you may need may be both practical and emotional. Feeling that you are not alone may prevent feelings of isolation.
- Trying bereavement counseling. Going to therapy after experiencing a loss may help you explore emotions surrounding your loss and eventually help you learn how to adopt healthy coping skills. This may help prevent you from engaging in destructive behavior which may be detrimental to you and/or your loved ones. Therapy can support you in slowly letting go of your belief that you might not be able to overcome your negative feelings and thoughts. Your therapist may also support you towards getting closure.
Even though bereaved parents may be supported to slowly learn how to cope with such a traumatic event, many parents feel that there is no fix and no permanent solution to their heartache. For as long as they live, parents will always grieve the loss of their children and continue loving them with all their heart and soul.
Claire Borg is a gestalt psychotherapist at Willingness. She works with adolescents and adults. She has a special interest in mental health. She can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can visit her profile on: https://zme.tec.mybluehost.me/willingnessmt/team/claire-borg/