Dealing with loss – Mental health

Dealing with loss of a friend is very tough for a child. While it comes as a shock for parents, knowing how to deal with emotions (theirs and their children) and teaching them how to deal with it is critical.

Loss of a loved one is always painful. Some of us do not know how to deal with it (irrespective of age). Escaping the reality is a very easy way that many of us adopt. However, when you start losing people around you, whom you have shared a desk for 5 years and today they are no longer there, it is very hard to deal with it. Today, when my children are facing a loss, I had to take a moment to figure out how to deal with it myself before I set out to have a conversation with them about it. When one loses a teenager, it is NEVER easy – for anyone who have ever known them in their life. It is a moment that sticks with us forever.

None of their friends are ready to talk about it. While I understand their initial reaction, all I could do was hope that they were talking to their families at least. One need not struggle alone with their thoughts. It is a choice every individual makes whether they want to deal with it alone or talk about it. It is very personal. However, letting someone into that space or writing out how you feel helps one deal with it. It cannot be shoved away. It is reality and it has happened. No point denying it.

Take your time. Think about the fond memories with that person and all those involved with that memory. When you are ready, talk to someone who also shares those memories. One might think that their parent, friends, or other counselors might not understand those memories, but those who have shared those memories (or similar ones) will understand how you might be feeling and talking to them also helps. Just do not choose to deal with it alone and let your thoughts carry you away into despair.

Parents being able to identify those moments and making children talk about those they have lost helps bring out their feelings and emotions.

If you know of a situation in your circle, reach out..! It makes a HUGE difference in the other person’s life!

For those who need help or pointers, these sites help with some guidance

  1. https://www.parents.com/parenting/better-parenting/advice/what-to-do-when-a-childs-friend-dies/
  2. https://centerforparentingeducation.org/library-of-articles/healthy-communication/talking-with-children-about-death/
  3. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/two-takes-depression/201612/the-dos-and-donts-talking-child-about-death

Stay safe! Stay healthy!

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