platitudes

how many have you heard and what?

So many!
You are stronger than you think.
At least you don’t have to …
Are you getting there?(after 4 weeks)
She has gone to a better place.
The good die young
At least you have…
You have to think of everyone else that depend on you
Think of the good times
When you feel you are sinking lift yourself up
Have a nice Christmas
Why haven’t you put any decorations up
I love the Christmas lights don’t you?

Deep breath!

Moggles, I can’t count the ones I’ve heard after the loss of my husband. And I’m sorry you’ve had to hear them at all after the loss of a child.

I imagine that some of the platitudes people spruik can be similar no matter what the loss is. Some of the ones I’ve heard that imagine to be similar are:

“You just have to get on with your life” (Thanks, but I no longer even know what my life IS. Your life has not altered the way mine has. Stick it).

“He wouldn’t want you to cry” (And you know this how, exactly? The truth is that YOU don’t want me to cry because it makes YOU uncomfortable)

“You need to be strong for your family” (Thanks for suggesting I’m not already doing the best I can for my family)

“You need to move on” (Thanks, but I’ll never move on from my loved one. Moving forward WITH them, yes; moving on from them, absolutely no way).

“You need to let go.” (Pardon my French, but all aboard the Nope train to F*ckthatville. My loved one and I can have a bond that continues into eternity, and we need never let go of that).

“Be grateful for what you have” (Um, d’uh. I AM grateful. But it is okay for me to miss my loved one too).

“At least you had…” (Thankyou for being so minimizing. Also, NEVER begin a sentence to a bereaved person with “At least.” NEVER. Do. Not. Do. It).

“You’re lucky because…” (While I realise that people experience many dreadful circumstances, if you tell me how lucky I am that my loss wasn’t worse in some way again, I might have to smack you one).

“You’ve got your memories” (Excuse me for being greedy, but I want HIM).

“Life goes on” (Oh, BOY, WTF does that even mean? And sometimes there are times when I don’t want this life to go on).

“Everything happens for a reason.” (First, I so HATE that one. Second, no. Sometimes crap things happen for no good reason whatsoever).

You’re young - you can always have another partner/baby… (Right. Because people are so replaceable).

Some of the above platitudes might be helpful to some people, but in the two years of my bereavement, I’ve found that most people find these things belittling and hurtful. And I struggle with worrying about people’s motives. Yes, most of the time, they don’t mean any harm. But I’m not sure that it’s always the job of the bereaved to worry about intentions - especially when a person keeps saying the same things to you after you’ve asked them not to do so. I like the way Megan Devine writes that these platitudes feel terrible because they ARE terrible. If you feel that something that has been said to you sucks, it does suck, and it’s okay not to be particularly grateful for that even if we know the person saying means well. The thing that infuriates me about platitudes is the correction they contain i.e. “He wouldn’t want you to cry (so stop being sad).” Platitudes seek not really to console us, but to correct us in some way, even if the person saying them isn’t immediately aware of that. I think it speaks to the need for a long-overdue overhaul in terms of the way people think about grief. It would be lovely to see new “platitudes” become common, such as “It’s okay that you’re hurting so much” or, “You don’t ever need to let go.”

Rant over and lots of love for anyone who needs it.

Louise xo

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I guess I also tend to have less patience when it becomes obvious that people are saying certain things not for me, but for themselves. They are actually more concerned with helping themselves feel better. Yes, that’s often because they don’t know how to handle very great pain in another person, and they lack the self-awareness to know why they’re putting out hurtful drivel, and that’s entirely forgiveable. I just don’t think I’m terribly evolved yet, because I still get cranky :slight_smile:

Hello, My 2nd daughter asked me to go to town for shoes for her son, yesterday and we bumped into my daughters, in laws, who asked how I was and then gave me their insight “you’ll get over it and it’ll get easier with time” and then told about a friend of a friend who’s daughter died and they were ok now! My response was “oh I will, will I !! Good know, I’m so glad I bumped into you you’ve made feel soooo much better NOT!! Her response was I didn’t have to be so rude she was only trying to help!? Oh right, News flash your not and there by the grace of god you never lose a child and I just walked off. I think I’m off their Christmas card list!
I was a bit rough with her, but it’s not even been a week since my girls funeral of which they didn’t even attend and I’m past caring to be honest plus it really upset me and I cry practically all the time but I sobbed for the rest of day I’m even crying as I write this . These people are in their 60’s they have lost family since I’ve known them, so what is wrong with them or is it me ? X

I feel quite sure that everybody that has spoken to me about Eileen has only been trying to be kind, so I don’t take any offence and I forgive them.

The worst one came from somone who was supposed to be supportive
“well you have another”

Oh wow, I wonder what makes people say these things ? My daughter used to say “you can’t fix stupid” she was funny with a great northern sense of humour.

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