A Bereaved Parents Wish List
I wish my child hadn't died, I wish my child back. I wish you wouldn't be afraid to speak my childs name.
My child lived and was very important to me. I need to know they were important to you as well.
If I cry and get emotional when you talk about my child, I wish you knew it isn't because you have hurt me. My child's death is the cause of my tears.
You have talked about my child and you have allowed me to share my grief, I thank you for both.
I wish you wouldn't "kill" my child by removing my child's pictures, artwork or other rememberances from your home.
Being a bereaved parent is not contagious, so I wish you wouldn't shy away from me. I need you more than ever.
I need diversions, so I do want to hear about you, but I also want to hear about me. I might be sad and I might cry, but I wish you would let me talk about my child, my favourite topic of the day.
I know that you think of and pray for me often. I also know that my child's death pains you, too. I wish you would let me know things, through a phone call, a card or a note, or a real big hug.
I wish you wouldn't expect my grief to be over in six months. I wish you could understand that my grief will never be over. I will suffer the death of my child until the day I die.
I am working very hard in my recovery, but I wish you would understand that I will never fully recover. I will always miss my child and I will always grieve that he is dead.
I wish you wouldn't expect me "not to think about it" or to "be happy". Neither will happen for a very long time so don't frustrate yourself.
I don't want to have a "pity party", but I do wish you would let me grieve, I must hurt before I can heal.
I wish you understood how my life has shattered. I know it's miserable for you to be around me when I am feeling miserable. Please be patient with me as I am with you.
When I say "I am doing OK", I wish you would understand that I don't feel OK and that I struggle daily.
I wish you knew all of the grief reactions i'm having are very normal. Depression, anger, hopelessness and overwhelming sadness are all to be expected. So please excuse me when I am quiet and withdrawn or irritable or cranky.
Your advice to "take one day at a time" is excellent. I wish you would understand that I am doing good to handle an hour at a time.
I wish you understood that grief changes people. When my child died, a big part of me died. I am not the same person I was before my child died, and I will not be that person again.
I wish very much that you would understand. Understand my loss and my grief, my silence and my tears, my void and my pain.
But I pray daily that you will never understand.