No parent can ever be prepared for a child’s demise. Whether it’s losing an infant, and adolescent, or an adult, parents always have hopes and dreams for their child. The loss can cause feelings of confusion, shock, denial, intense sadness, despair, and even depression.
While we believe that each experience is unique, here are some bits of advice from the Last Journey that may help you deal with pain.
- Accept what you feel.
Acceptance of your feelings is highly stressed upon mainly because such painful incidents can cause feelings of denial. Accept each emotion, be it sadness or guilt. Examine the reality of whatever happened with your child and continuously try to assure yourself that you did everything you could.
2. Stick Together.
The thing that helps the most during this hard time is to stick with family and lean onto each other. Your family may be going through a similar amount of pain and sorrow, and being with each other can make you feel stronger. Use this feeling of belonging to come out of the traumatic experience.
3. Accept Help.
Don’t be hard on yourself and try to manage everything on your own. Accept help from extended family members, friends, and neighbors. Allow them to help you with meals, run errands, and take care of other children. Above all, talk to them for support and love.
Many times even our families don’t understand how to support. Don’t feel hesitant to ask them for help and tell them your needs whenever anyone makes an offer.
4. Pay attention to your Health.
After the loss, one may get so lost in grief that they overall stop making any efforts towards health. One may forget to eat, don’t exercise at all, or even visit the doctor if sick. At such times it gets really important to see the bigger picture and at least start taking small steps to take care of oneself. You can start by eating more fruits and vegetables, going for a small walk, and then eventually, once you start feeling better, you can make more changes.
5. Seek Professional Help.
Each experience with grief is different, and it also depends on one’s personality, coping mechanisms, and life experiences. If at any time you feel that you are unable to manage your life even after trying, the best option is to take professional help. Psychologists can help you come up with workable coping solutions that may help you go ahead with your life. You can also consider taking family counseling sessions.