When grieving the loss of a child, 'feeling is healing'

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • shavertz Fruit Heights, UT
    March 1, 2012 9:42 a.m.

    A loss is a loss no matter how you think about it. To all who have served in the military and the family of military families my heart, thoughts and prayers are with you. Multiple losses over of short period of time are especially difficult. My heart goes out to you Justice4 all as well. Some of my experiences are expressed in the article. I lost my first wife in 2003 and then Emmalee in 2009. For me the loss of Emmalee was much more difficult to handle. While doing counseling for the last 20 years I used to teach clients about the 5 stages of grief and loss. I will never do that again. I don't believe there are stages to grief just feelings that are neither right or wrong. I helped clients explore their feelings and to try to express them verbally or in writing. God bless you all!

  • hc1951 Bend, OR
    Feb. 29, 2012 8:14 p.m.

    Oh, dear "justice4all"! My losing just one wonderful, strong child was nothing compared to your multiple losses. I cannot disagree with your need to keep your grief to yourself; I think that is how George's dad copes (we're divorced). What I do know is that none of us experiences grief in the same way; not me, nor each of my surviving children, not you. It's an internal process that no-one can share with us except Heavenly Father. I than Him for that every day.

  • justice4all Moab, UT
    Feb. 29, 2012 9:58 a.m.

    I have lost 3 children, ages 17, 22,and 30....2 by suicide and one by an accidental overdose. All 3 within 3 years of each other. In addition I lost my husband in a car accident, just 2 motnhs before 3rd child died. It will be 3 years ago this March. I never had time to "feel" before another death tragically put me down again. I have learned that the grief "changes with time", but it never goes away. The worst thing you can tell a parent is "It will get better with time", or "They are in a better place".....really the worse thing you can do, if you have never experienced the pain of it yourself, is first be so thankful that you haven't, pray that you never will, and then just give the person a big hug, and say nothing. Share your tears...but keep your silence. Because even though you mean well, the only others that can relate to your pain...is someone that has experienced it. In my case, I feel so odd, because most have not suffereed the loss of 3 children, each in separate tragidies, and each an unexpected, unprepared for death. Not the we are never eally ever prepared for the death of a child, but when that death comes so totally unexpected....those last words, you ever hear from them, and not know it was the last words...is like a pain no one should have to experience. I miss my kids, and struggle each day to find a reason to keep going on myself. Lately, it's been hard. Very hard. I even lost my husband, whom I grieved with. At least he did not have to see our 3rd child die, He died just 2 months before....I had to go through that death all by myself. And I still do.

  • hc1951 Bend, OR
    Feb. 28, 2012 8:16 p.m.

    "Part of your healing from grief comes from being able to mourn and to share the story"
    It is almost two years since my 24-year-old son, George Van Ry, died from the brain tumor I thought he was beating. Of all the stages of grief (more like a gradually slowing spiral, actually) I was surprised to find that talking about the experience was, in fact, the most helpful to me. I am so grateful to those friends brave enough to ask, and listen. It also helped to create a blog which you are welcome to read, although I can't put the URL in these comments. You might be able to Google togeorgeonleaving.
    We need to learn to deal better with death and grief. The Gospel helps, but pain plays no favorites; anger towards everything, including the God I love, is natural and appropriate as long as we allow ourselves the benefits of the full process.

  • texasangel Ballinger, Tx
    Feb. 27, 2012 8:48 p.m.

    Utah girl,
    I understand your feelings about your son currently serving in Afganistan. I first want to tell you as a USAF veteran- Thank you for your sons service in the Military. I lost my son James nearly 9 yra ago it still hurts. his youngest brother is now 16- and has ever intention of joining the army and become a paratrooper. If I said i was not afraid of buring yet another child i would be bold faced lieing! I am afraid. But I am also proud that his brother Peter wants to pick up that baton of keeping our Nation free! My son James never got to go active duty. I do not want to bury another child- one is one too many. But if Peter does give the ultimate sacrafice to His country, I will humbly and proudly accept that flag. I rather have my child have a honorable death - that the other way. But I can pray for the safety of your son until he can hug you again!

  • Utah Girl Vernal, UT
    Feb. 27, 2012 6:11 p.m.

    I currently have a son stationed in Afghanistan, and while I FERVENTLY hope and pray that nothing will happen to him there, I know the risk is very real. I would like to have some ideas on what to read, or a group to contact similar to the ones mentioned in this wonderful article, in the event of a sudden, combat-related death. Not looking for sorrow, just wanting to be prepared ahead of time, if it is needed.

    I have had miscarriages, and have lost both parents and other relatives. But I can't imagine a pain worse than losing a child. I hope I never outlive any of my children, but if I do I hope that my faith in God will help to sustain me, and my family, through it all.

  • JSL St. ALbert, 00
    Feb. 27, 2012 12:49 p.m.

    When I was struggling, questioning I read the book Journey to the Sacred:Mending a Fractured Soul by Jane Simington, and was changed drastically by it. I had been searching for many years for words, for language to voice what I had experienced. To guide myself out of a darkness that no matter what I reached for could only ease the struggle every now and then.

    Jane Simingtons writing and teaching is a spiritual antiseptic greater than any I had ever come across.
    It helped me on my healing journey maybe it can be of help to your readers as well.

  • fowersjl Farmington, Utah
    Feb. 27, 2012 10:32 a.m.

    Several years after the death of our 23 year old son from an unknown heart condition, a former neighbor stopped me in the store and started talking about him, remembering a time when he organized a sub for santa for a single mother and children. It was something I did not remember, or never knew. Yes, it brought tears, to both of us, but I walked away so grateful for this man who had remembered my boy and told me about it. Parents want to keep alive the memory of their children, and bless the people who help them do it and are willing to talk about it.