Hi there all. Firstly may I say how truly sorry I am for all your losses and that you find your worlds so shattered by your tragedies. I am here for advice on how to support my friend who has recently lost their 15 year old boy suddenly and unexpectedly. It is nearing 12 weeks and it has been difficult so far to have a true conversation with them about how best to support. What worries me in particular is sensitivity of certain dates and whilst all days are devastating in this new world - could I ask is it more likely to be the day of the death itself or the date that is most upsetting and when my friend will most appreciate me reaching out to let them know I am thinking of them? So for example three months after the date of death or three months after the day itself, even if the date is different from the date of death? Thank you so much for your thoughts
Oscar, what a wonderful friend you are and to be honest everyday we all need support.
Personally I find birthdays and any anniversaries bad plus the day my soulmate had to leave which is a Sunday and then you get Christmas and the other festive days. So really it is a full time job trying to avoid thinking of that special person.
Sue Ryder have a Facebook site which may help you dealing with grief and helping people and I have just tried to attach it but failed.
Sometimes it’s just knowing that there is someone there you can turn to that won’t judge you when you cry and that they won’t get upset. It’s a tough world but put grief into that world because your 15 son has gone then tough doesn’t come near explaining one’s feelings. Just be there. Thinking of you and your friend. S xx
Hello Oscar, I also think you are a wonderful friend, and I think you are sensitive enough to follow your instincts.
Dates etc do become like totems, at least for me in the early days. My adult daughter passed 8 weeks ago last Wednesday, but it will be 2 calendar months tomorrow. We’ve also had her birthday in there too, and her husband’s and brother’s. Just let your friend know, on any day, that you care about them. Just be there, don’t be one of those who disappear because they don’t know what to say. Just I’m so so sorry will do.
Oscar looks like you are doing just fine.Dont be afraid to talk I lost my daughter 12 weeks ago .And my friend is never afraid to talk about my daughterShe knows that’s what I want regardless of any anniversaries.
Hi Oscar. I would say. It’s not so much the date although they are important. What I would have found a great comfort is if friends had just carried on being friends. Instead of treating me like a leaper. Just try to be as normal as you can but also be prepared for days that your friend is just inconsolable. We all need a very decent friend at these times. You sound like a lovely person. Never be afraid to just be normal around your friend. Do all the stuff you normally do around them. They may not notice in the beginning but they will soon come to realize that you are a pillar of strength. Jim
We all listen to Jim, he always gets it just right, has great wisdom. True, Jim, you say it for all of us, just as it is.
Love and hugs, Ann x
Ann. . You make me sound like the Messiah. That’s brought a smile to my face. I’ll not be able to get my head through the door.
Thank you . Jim
Glad I’ve made you smile, but you do so often absolutely nail it. Thank you.
You sound like a great friend.
I have a wonderful friend who always remembers Gemmas birthday, anniversary etc and she often brings her into conversations.
Some people are afraid to mention a child who has died and after a while it feels like everyone has forgotten about our children who are no longer with us and that hurts more than anything.
Your friend is lucky to have you
Thank you so much all for your kind responses. Sorry I am not that fast at replying but all your replies are so much appreciated. Thank you for taking the time to offer your help and support, especially when you each are dealing with your own cruel losses.
I have not felt this helpless and powerless before and learning that there is no way I can fix this for my friend is hard, but I must try to support them and am determined not to go away. I know I won’t always get it right, but I must try.
Thank you Jim for giving me the confidence to continue with this.
Liz, Ann, Kath - thank you for your replies when you are each going through your own unique versions of this devastating loss. It really is appreciated.
Thank you so much Susie.