Written by Jana Angeles
Parenting is a hard job, but also a rewarding one. We go through challenges together when it comes to our children, but we’re also entirely responsible for how they develop and what they value as people. We can only steer them in the right direction when we give them constant love and support. There comes a time in our lives where we have to face the death of our child. It could be from an accidental circumstance or losing a battle from a disease.
It’s tragic to think that parents around the world have to grieve over the death of their children. As a couple, it’s important that you and your partner support each other through this tough time. When you do this, you become stronger and better people, acknowledging the fact that you can get through anything. So how can you show support to your partner after the loss of your child?
Have Them Cry It Out
It’s completely normal for your partner to breakdown in tears after the passing of your child. It’s a difficult time you’re both experiencing and you’re at the point where it seems impossible not to be sad. The healthiest way to release your emotions is to cry it all out. The last thing you want is to bottle up how you truly feel and pull out the ‘I’m fine’ card. When your partner cries, offer them a listening ear, a hug and a meaningful conversation.
Let Yourself Be Honest
You have to be careful on what you say to your partner during this time. You can’t just say generic phrases such as “They’re in a better place” or “It could’ve been worse.” Statements like that can hurt them because it implies that you don’t care. Carefully think about how you approach your words when trying to console your partner. Be honest and admit that you’re confused by everything and that you’re trying your best to comfort them.
Give Them Personal Space
This is especially important if your partner is an introvert. Giving them space will give them the opportunity to find unique ways to heal. If they have to grieve, you’ve got to let them. It’s not unusual if they become withdrawn from everyday activities. If they need to stay home and recoup for a bit, you have to show understanding and empathy towards that.
Get Used To The Silence
If your partner isn’t very talkative during the passing of your child, get used to the silence. Of course, we all grieve in different ways and they may talk to you as a way to distract themselves from thinking about it. All individuals are different but most need to retreat and escape. If they go out and spend time with their friends, have more alone time than usual or pick up a new hobby, you should let them. They will talk to you again when they’re ready.
Losing your child is one of the worst things you can experience as a parent. If you or your partner need help, do not hesitate to take on professional counselling sessions or call a crisis telephone line such as Lifeline (13 11 14). Nothing comes easy in this life and sometimes, we have to go through unexpected circumstances. When it comes to losing your child, there’s no rush in healing quickly. Remember there’s still time to discover new things about yourself and that strength will come to you in no time.