What about Traumatic Grief? ~
We have, or will at some point, experience grief. We will have to say goodbye to a relationship, we will experience divorce, we will have to say goodbye to someone we loved. It is in those times that we often hear, “Time will take away the pain”, “don’t worry, you will get over it”. Also, “I have been there and I know exactly how you are feeling”.
I know that these words are meant to comfort; they are meant as a form of support from friends and loved ones. The words do sometimes hold water.
I have heard from many people that these platitudes are helpful, and I have also heard these words can be hurtful. These words can change, and even break, relationships.
In the last week I have heard of another person, someone that isn’t “supposed” to be depressed, that committed suicide. He was a son, father, and husband, and was loved by more people than I can even imagine. And he, I am guessing, needed his pain to end.
This is a great example of a loss that will linger for a long time. A loss without good closure. A loss that has left more questions than answers. A loss that lingers. My hopes and prayers are that those touched by his loss recognize that this is a traumatic loss, resulting in a traumatic grief.
This is a loss that won’t get easier with time.
Losing a child is a loss that doesn’t get easier with time.
These losses are traumatic and offer us the opportunity to become strong enough to carry them with us.
As those left to ponder the why we grow in our ability to manage the feelings; even honoring the feelings by leaning into them (when needed), and in the process becoming stronger to carry the memories, the feelings of love for those we miss, and the feelings of deep longing.