DEATH OF A CHILD

In the near future I will begin serializing my own book on the death of my child. In the meantime I will look in general at the death of a child and its impact. The death of a child can lead to complicated grieving, because it is a particularly painful loss. It is not the natural order of things that a child should die before its parents. There are so many hopes and dreams unfulfilled. My child, who was killed when he was thirteen, would be thirty-three now. I often wonder what he would be like as an adult, how would I relate to him, who would his wife have been, would he have been a good and kind husband, would he have had children, what kind of parent would he have been.  It is natural to have such thoughts and memories, it does not mean living in the past. People say that the death of a child is the saddest of all losses, but it is important to remember that every person experiences loss differently. I can certainly say that the loss of my child was immensely more painful than the loss of my father. I can say no more than that, and I cannot project this onto other people. All people grieve differently. Sometimes the death of a child is so painful that some parents try to blot out the memory. I have met individuals who lost their children, and they seem to carry on normally in the very early stages of the bereavement, and show good humour and a sense of optimism about their lives. I am very consciousness of the terrible pain that they have buried. Sensitive and skilled counselling is required to support them in bringing out this pain, and in supporting them as they struggle with the reality of the loss of their child.

Posted in Bereavement Grief and Loss
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