The Advice I Wish I Got After My Son Died

when my son died

When my son died, I received a lot of advice. I found people do not know what to say. They default to the things they have been conditioned to say during these times. It came from many different sources, most of which had never lost a child. The advice came from good intentions, but it was hollow. Not at all what I needed in that moment.

When someone would tell me it would be OK, I was angry. They would say everything happens for a reason and I should trust God. More anger. Then there was, “Give it time. Time heals all wounds.” It doesn’t. Then there were the people that tried to facilitate a connection. Here, call Jane. She lost her son, too. I was not in a place talk to other bereaved mothers and hear all about their experience. Everything felt like pressure towards a direction someone else thought was best for me. Someone that had never stood where I was standing.

If you haven’t noticed, there is a lot of anger in grief. It is unavoidable so you should just learn to embrace it early. It made me feel like I was going crazy. Everything made me mad. I hated their advice yet I found myself starting to wonder if I should listen. It didn’t resonate, but I was desperate. So I started judging my grief. It made me question everything I was doing and feel as if I was doing it all wrong. That made me more angry.

Then I had a breakthrough. A grief breakthrough.

I don’t recall the cause or the source, but I suddenly understood what I needed to do. It all made sense.

My epiphany? My grief is only about me. The journey I walk is my own. No one can tell me how to do it. I simply have to do whatever I feel is right in the moment for me. It is not my job to help make others feel better. I cannot be concerned for how they are doing. I know it sounds harsh and unfeeling. However, there is an “I” in grief. As there should be! It is the only way because MY son died! This was about Cameron and I. No one else. The rest of the world has their own path  to follow and they must figure it out on their own.

It seemed so simple. Selfish, but simple.

Since my son died, I have changed the way I talk to someone that has experienced loss. I never tell them I am sorry, that is the worst thing to say when someone dies. I am no longer afraid to say, “That really sucks!” It does. Then I tell them I am thinking about them and sending love. I really am. Love is all that matters. If I feel the urge to share advice, I simply tell them their grief is unique to them. They have to do whatever is right for them and not compare themselves to anyone else. Don’t worry about what anyone else tells you. Just follow your gut.

This advice would have saved me so much agony.

What is your go to advice?

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118 Comments on “The Advice I Wish I Got After My Son Died”

  1. We have lost a daughter age 21 and son age 50 our hearts are broken we don’t have any more family , we never got any help after we lost both our daughter passed away 33 years ago our son passed away year gone November on our wedding anniversary, we love and miss both so much our lives are empty we try and help each other get though each day , thinking of every one who have lost a loved one xxxx ??????

    1. That is a lot of heartbreak! It is a tough road to lose a child (let alone 2). Much love to you both.

  2. My son passed away February 8 of this year. I have spent all day reading your blog and it has really helped me. I have felt so alone and lost. This article really hit home. Thank you so much for sharing your story. Losing a child sucks! Much love to you, please keep doing what you’re doing and helping other bereaved mothers like myself get through this awful time.

    1. Sarah – I am so glad you found comfort in what you have read. You are definitely not alone. Losing a child does suck. Reclaiming your life after is a daily thing. Much love to you as you navigate your loss. There are so many of us out there ready to support each other through this journey. XO

  3. I have lost two children one at age 20 and then one who is handicapped my daughter 8 years after he got killed. I am very angry and I can’t get myself out of this depression I have lost two children and that is very hard

    1. That is an incredibly hard road. Anger makes sense. It’s such a big part of grief because the loss (both of your losses) go against nature. It’s not supposed to be this way. Life can be very unfair. Sending lots of love your way.

  4. I lost my son to SIDS when he was 10 weeks old, & I quickly learned who I could go to & who were just going to spout off worn out comfortless cliches. Luckily, I had 3 main people who were my whole support system when it happened. They knew they didn’t know the answers, but they allowed me space to talk about my son, my grief, & my fears of having failed as a mother. They gave me love, & even almost 8 years later, they assure me that grief isn’t something I “should be over by now,” that it’s a lifelong process that changes forms along the way. Because of them, those are the words I offer to other people who experience a loss.

    1. Loss definitely shows us who our people are. Like you, I had a few people that didn’t allow things to be uncomfortable. They kept inserting themselves, were willing to sit in the silence, and allowed me to talk (and also talked) normally about my son. Cherish those people! Your words of wisdom are so true and great advice for anyone new on this path. Hugs!

  5. My son has been gone for two years. I am either thinking about him, talking to him or avoiding looking at his picture and being in the moment with him because it is so fresh and still hurts so much. The more time that passes, the more unbelievable it is that he is gone. His 9 years of life were spent in and out of hospitals until he could fight no more. Anger was and still is a big part of what I feel. Anger at parents who take their children for granted. Anger at people who are well meaning and say that they are praying for me when all their prayers for healing my son were left unanswered. I miss him so much and it sucks that he isnt here and it just is not fair. I just want to be with him.

    1. I agree the more time that passes the more unbelievable it seems to be. I also realize that I’ve built this wall around the pain. If I sit with the reality of him being gone or think too long about the details I find myself slipping right back to how I felt early on. Anger was big for me too. It can be hard to manage how much you let yourself feel it. Sending lots of love.

    2. I feel the same, I just want to be with him, car accident 1 month ago he was 33. Can’t bear the lose , your not alone

    3. I know exactly how you feel. I’m sorry for your loss, and mine too. My son was 12 years old when he died about two weeks ago. The hole he left in my heart is bigger than I know what to do with. He’s been in and out of hospitals for about the past five years. He died in one. He never saw home again. I don’t know what to do. It hurts so much. I miss him and I just want him back.

      1. I can relate. Life after loss can be so hard to navigate, even years after… but especially early on. Don’t believe people when they tell you time heals and it gets easier. However, you will learn how to carry this grief, which will feel more manageable as time goes on. Your son is still all around you. Healing isn’t moving on… it’s figuring out how to move forward with your son still incorporated in your life. If you are looking for a place to connect with other bereaved parents that get it, I have a closed Facebook Group. http://www.facebook.com/groups/livingafterchildloss

  6. Losing a child sucks, parents are not supposed to bury their children. I turn to god for comfort, read the bible and listen to gospel. But I have come to the conclusion that we live in an imperfect world and that we have to keep breathing, that’s why it makes it to so hard to continue living with so much pain.

    1. You’re right, it does suck. We should never outlive our children. It is so important though to find what works for you to continue living after. Hugs.

  7. My daughter’s death in 2015 destroyed my family. My brother found it easier to pretend I didn’t exist than support me. This caused added pain and a broken relationship with my parents who were angry at me for not feeling sorry for him. We don’t even speak anymoreas they weren’t interested in talking through it. So I lost them as well as my daughter. I find comfort and support in my grief from a few good friends, without them I would be really struggling.

    1. Relationships can change so much after child loss. The people you think will be there in your lowest times aren’t always the ones that can support you. Just one more reality that slaps us in the face. I’m so glad you have a few people you can count on to offer what you need. It really is so important. Sending love.

  8. The loss of our 22 year old grandson has left our entire family struggling with his death. We all have our own way of dealing with it. I watch my daughter,her husband and their other grown son live each day with the recognition that their lives will never be the same. We hold tight to each other. Others who have never lost a young member of their family really can’t relate to this situation so they do the best they can to try to make you feel better when in reality there is nothing they can do. Much love to those who are going through this nightmare.

    1. Loss really does change your life in a way only others who have experienced it can relate. Sending lots of love your way!

    2. I understand totally tight big Italian family my son my only child Matthew past may 19th 2018
      He was the 1st grandson we had him 9 years before any other grandchildren came he was everything to everyone at 26 he passed away fentanyl poisoning I am so sorry for your loss it destroys everyone

  9. My son passed away Feb 26,2017 He was 47 years old. I am still so angry. He was a wonderful person. One person said time heals all wounds. They never buried their child. Time will never heal this open gaping wound. I miss him so much He was a bright light to all who knew him. The best words for me to hear were. I’m so sorry for your loss. One other person said they didn’t talk to us about him because they didn’t want to remind us that he died. Really???i wake up everyday knowing that. People need to talk about your loved one. It keeps the memory alive We need to talk about him. I have always been strong in my faith however this has taken a toll on that. We’re not supposed to bury our children. I am sorry for everyone who has gone through this.

    1. You’re right, we aren’t supposed to bury our children! Time does NOT heal this wound. We simply learn coping mechanisms to carry the weight of the grief. I also have people that ignore the topic of my son. It’s so hard. My focus has been on surrounding myself with the people that will. It’s what I need to continue on…I’m sure you feel the same. They existed. They lived and died. They are loved…even still. Hugs!

  10. We lost our son June 30, 2017. I have emotions that bounce all over the place. I am finally to the point I just want to stay away from people, except my family. We bought an RV to travel with our sons wife and grandchildren. Our son would be happy about that. I want to remove my name from our church roster. I don’t want anyone to expect anything out of me. Our church was so good to our son and us too, I hate to just say I quit. However, that is exactly what I feel like. My husband does not feel
    Like I do, and I do t want to let him down either. I am just sad to my very bones and so very tired of pretending all is well. What should I do. I want to just lie down somewhere and stay there until I see my sweet 43 year old son again. He battled cancer 6 1/2 Years. I don’t want him to come back to this earth to suffer. I want to go where he is!

    1. I hear you, Kathie! It’s so hard to be around others and feel that expectation. They think we are the same people we were when our sons were alive. Unless they’ve walked this path, they have no idea how much it changes a person. I am a firm believer that you must do what feels right to you. If that means taking a break from people, from church, from whatever it is that causes you additional stress…do it. Surviving loss is about simplifying your life. Letting go of the things that don’t matter. Learning to put yourself first. Down the road you may decide to change your mind again. It’s really whatever feels right to you. I continue to tell myself my son would want me to live the best life possible…what he remembered of our life here. I’m sure your son would say the same. Hugs!

  11. February 3, 2018 is the day that changed our lives forever. Life SUCKS!!
    Our son Curtis 22yrs was killed in a car accident, someone pulled out in front of him.
    I don’t understand, I have so much anger. I hate to be around people, especially when they talk about the “weather” I feel so depressed and I hate that he’s not here w us. We will never see him fall in love, get married, have kids, or dance w him at his wedding. It’s hard to think he’s “better” off cause he wasn’t sick. Everything was perfect. He was just getting his life started. He told me he was ready to buy a house, fall in love and start a new chapter in his life. I get so mad when people say “Time will heal, It’s God will, He’s in a better place” Before my son was killed we laid my mom to rest 3 weeks prior. Life sucks and I need off this roller coaster.

    1. Time most certainly does not heal. I believe loss like this will always have moments it feels like it happened forever ago and in the next breath it can feel like it happened yesterday. Sending you lots of love and strength. The two biggest losses (your mother & your child) within 3-weeks of each other is a LOT. Hugs!

    2. Esther, life really sucks. I buried my mother 11 months ago and on April 4th my firstborn son, 29 years old. He died after 12 days in the ICU after a traffic accident – someone pulled out in front of him, too….. He was on his motorbike, landed on his head, finally his body shut down and we lost him. He was laid to rest in the very same suit we bought only days earlier for his upcoming wedding. It’s beoynd cruel. I don’t know how I will survive. I hate myself for feeling this way as I have two more sons and a baby granddaughter. “One person is missing and the whole world is empty”. Oh yes. This blog, which I found only yesterday, states a lot of what I am experiencing and feeling. I’ve been offered professional support but I doubt that it can give me anything more that this. For now. I hope we both, and all other mothers dealing with this, find a way to breathe again.

      1. Hugs to you Catarina. I understand when you say one person is missing and the whole world is empty. That’s a hard feeling to overcome and get past. I think it will always be there for us.

    3. We just lost our son On September 27th this year to a car accident. A silage truck t-boned him. My son was 22 years old And his cousin who was 16 both lost their lives ….their lives were just beginning and it pisses me off when they tell me his work on earth was done. Really?? He is in a better place ….no the better place is here with his family not 6 feet under! There is a reason for everything….are you kidding me??? I know people are just trying to make you feel better but when your going through this you realize how bad that all really sounds when your the one it’s being told to. Not fare never will be it’s just f…ked up!!! That’s just plain and simple nothing will make it better nothing will fix it nothing changes it !!! It’s now trying to live with a fake smile so everyone else thinks you got it together and your strong.

  12. My 23 year old son died suddenly on Christmas Day last year. He was doing volunteer work in Cambodia with the poor. It was his 9th journey back to this country where he was at his best. He suffered from mental illness, but that did not matter there. They loved him for who he was and for his gift for teaching English. I cannot believe I will not see him again.

    1. Hugs! I understand what it is to lose a child on Christmas…how it changes not only your life, but the joy of that holiday. I’m not sure the reality of never seeing them again ever really sets in. XO Emily

    2. My son died in road accident on 22 July 2019 at the age of 13 and people are trying to console me that time will heal my pain. But I feel pain is going deeper with each passing days and will remain in rest of my life . If death is some thing which can come on my wish, I would embrace because I don’t see any charm or attraction in my life without him.
      Some time I feel that God has punished me of some sin which may I did in my life.
      I also have a daughter age 10 yrs, and perhaps she is only reason that I should live. Now, apprehension of losing her always haunt me.

  13. My son was murdered by his father because I was going to divorce him. I even went to court to get help and told them of his plan. The judge did not listen and told me nothing will happen to my son. I went to crisis center for help and no one helped me. I went to the police department for help and no one believed me. Two weeks later my son was murdered
    and my husband commit suicide on the same day. They died of carbon monoxide poisoning and all pre-meditated. This was how I told everyone my husband said he’d do it. And no one believed me. It took a 2 year old boy to die in his sleep for people to start believing. But they all pointed fingers at each other. And no one was reprimanded. But I live a life sentence of pain since February 6th, 2005. The pain is still strong. My only wish is to die young naturally so we can be together as Mother and son in God’s protective arms. No pain just love. I’m waiting.

    1. Riley I totall relate. My son was in a domestic violence situation and she drove him to suicide. She used the courts to keep my son isolated. I jumped up and down telling judges and others my son I gonna kill himself. No one listened. Also no reprimands. The only thing keeping me alive is to make someone see what really happened and punish those that did this.

  14. My 19 year old son died two and a half weeks ago after being in the hospital for 12 days because of a car accident. The driver of the car, was likely drunk, maybe high, and walked away, leaving my son lying in the road for an hour and a half before he was found by a delivery driver. My son never gained consciousness but he hung on for 12 days. It was the longest 12 days of our lives. We are struggling with grief and anger. Anger at the driver who left him there, maybe – just maybe, he would have had a chance if they had gotten to him sooner.
    Thank you for sharing this information. I know that there is no blueprint for grief but hearing some of what is likely to happen helps me to know, we’re not all crazy.

    1. We are not crazy! We are just trying to navigate the greatest loss imaginable. Sending so much love to you.

    2. I am sorry… no enough is it? Maybe even lame? I lost my only son today. I don’t know how to feel yet. I am grief stricken… I am angry… and I am lost. LOST.

  15. Hi
    I lost Luke x
    One day I will die – what a brilliant destination – I cannot wait and daydream about how to hurry it along – we were soul mates of the highest order – we will meet again

  16. We lost our son to a relapse 10 weeks back . He was in recovery but made one more final mistake so we were a little caught off guard.He had a many positive things going in his life like work, apartment, meditation and yoga and had recently met his soul mate .I was the one who found him .I cannot remove the image of what I saw ,its unimaginable ,but grateful my wife didn’t see him that way. She is so angry and I don’t know what I am supposed to do.

    1. Sending you so much love! Do whatever feels right in the moment. Grief has no rules so don’t have any expectations. We never get over the trauma of losing our children (and it sounds like yours was very difficult). One day at a time is all you can do as you learn to carry that pain.

    2. I lost my son to a relapse 16 days ago he was 19 I can’t even get out of bed and I feel like I’m letting everyone down my poor 6 year old sees me cry all day how do I go on like this…he too was doing so well clean for 10 months, great job, new apartment with wonderful sober girlfriend. I don’t know why he relapsed. I’m scared I’m going to lose everyone close to me I feel so alone

    3. MHR, lost my son 1 year ago, he was 21 years of age, your comment got my attention, everything you said is what happened to me, my son and family, I feel your pain, and am also still trying to figure out how to get thru life. Thank you for posting

  17. I lost my son on mother’s Day may 13th 2001,from brain cancer he was 14,its a struggle everyday, but I do it, I go to work and live my life but it hurts some days it feels like I’m suffocating, he was my only child so it’s very hard I really miss him I know he’s in a better place he has a room with a view, he’s my angel

  18. My only child died January 2018 we were going to hang out he got foul mood which wasn’t him I left called him two blocks away his cell phone only was working on wifi he died alone at hospital heart or on way no neighbor call me they knew my number he said he felt little sick so he call ambulance 36 just him and me because he was ADHD and dyslexic we were constantly together I have no one and nothing over 65 I can’t ..

  19. I lost my son on March 3,2018 due to a car accident he was 24 years old. My son and his best friend both died. The bodies were so damaged because the car ignited that when the fireman arrived, and put out the fire they could tell if it was a man or woman. They identify the boys with dental records. I miss him so much. This pain I am feeling is over whelming. I cry everyday. I don’t have the energy or will to keep on living. I am trying so hard to move from me crying and feeling depressed

    1. It’s a difficult thing to live after your child is gone. Take care of yourself. I always tell myself my son would want to see us the way we were when he was here, as hard as that may be. My goal is to try and get as close as I can…for him. Hugs!

    2. I too lost my son. He was 24 years old when he died in a car accident on August 11, 2018. I hold on to the coroner’s findings that he was killed in the accident and not in the fire. Most people don’t understand that the circumstances make it so much more than just a car accident. I carry his picture with me wherever I go; I visit his grave every weekend; I cry everyday. I have come to understand that this is who I am now – my new norm. I have to take life at a slower pace; I have to give myself permission to excuse myself when I am over whelmed; I have to make sure I have tissues with me at all times. Our sons would not wish for us to not live our lives. It is our responsibility to keep their memories alive – to embrace the 24 precious years we did have with them. Grief will be our constant companion – we will eventually learn how to neatly fold it and pack it when we must carry it out of sight – and we will gratefully pull it out when we feel a need to wallow in it. But that is ok – we have earned that right by being mothers who have been forced to release our sons much sooner than we were ready. We do not need to be whole to move forward, because that is something we will never be again. No one can tell us to let them go and leave them in the past – with each step forward we will lovingly carry them with us. We move on not in spite of their deaths, but in honor of their lives. God bless you.

    3. I lost my Son 1 month ago from Acute Leukaemia. 2 weeks in hospital then he died. From being healthy and on holidays we came back and he died. He was 33 years old and had a beautiful wife and every thing to live for. 1st oct 2019 we as parents died with him.
      Time will move on as people say though we will never move on from our loss of our beautiful boy.
      So Broken

  20. I lost my middle child, boy, couple weeks ago. He used heroin for over a year, developed endocarditis in February, survived heart valve replacement and recovered nicely. He came home in May and died 8 days later in his bed! Shock!! I don’t know how to go on!! People say you have your other kids to live for… but I miss HIM!! Life is not complete without him. He was only 20 years old , funny, sweet, handsome, smart. I don’t buy this whole GOD bs, and “he’s in a better place now”.. it frustrates me to hear these comments! No! He was supposed to be here with his family, see his sisters get married, be the best man at his brothers wedding and argue with me about all the little things we argued! How do I move on when all I want is to stop living

    1. I understand! He is the missing puzzle piece. Life will never feel complete again without him here. Loss like this is so unfair and cruel. Sending lots of love your way!

  21. My son, Andy, died two days before his birthday on Feb 3, 2013. He was 36. My husband and I had cooked him a birthday dinner and cake but on that day, instead of he and his wife and two year old daughter showing up to celebrate, the phone rang with the bad news just as we finished cooking. We clung to each other to get through February and three weeks after his death, I came home from work and found my husband in a chair, dead, blood clot, heart attack. We were married 37 years. My life has gone on but my broken heart remains broken. My granddaughter is 7 now and she talks about her dad, she wants to have a dad, she wants to know him, and she talks about her pappy. She used to remember them both but the memories fade for a small child. Watching my younger son, now 29, grieve over the loss of his brother and dad just added to my pain. I miss Andy’s beautiful smile and chuckle, his good nature, and his big heart. I miss how we used to have deep conversations about life. I’m sad that he isn’t in his daughter’s life. There is no rhyme or reason or understanding for why these things happen. There is no peace because a mother can spend eons of time wondering about the truth of religious beliefs, the resting place of souls, does the soul exist in another realm, will you see them again, do they know their life meant something, that they are missed and loved. There is no one to talk to about it because those who haven’t experienced losing a child can’t fathom it and they are uncomfortable trying to do so, they can’t go there, of course. Those that have experienced it, well, sometimes it hurts to share our pain.

    1. I understand the spending eons of time questioning everything!! It was my son’s death that solidified my beliefs. I visited a medium shortly after my son died. Things came through that reading that no one could have possibly known. She told me about things I was seeing and hadn’t told anyone… super specific and only Cameron could have known. Things they told me about that didn’t really make sense that day have since come true. There was just so much validation there. I know he is still here with us, just in a different form. It helped me tune into his signs. You’re right though, only another bereaved parent seems comfortable enough to have some of these conversations. I swear I could talk for hours on this topic alone! Hang in there. Life should not have to be this hard, but it is. Sending lots of love.

  22. I lost my 22 year old son three months ago to suicide. He was my only, the result of five years of infertility. He has been my whole world for so long that I don’t know how to move on. I am currently not working – have been out of work for 18 months and have essentially been estranged from my husband for the last 15 years. Now I am faced with losing my home and everything that represents my son and me. I am so broken hearted that I don’t sleep, don’t eat and just cry, cry and cry. I finally this morning got out of bed for the first time in a week. I don’t know what to do anymore. Next week is his birthday, he would have been 23. 23! So young and had so much to look forward to and now my life is nothing. I see me homeless and wandering the streets in six months. How can someone get over something like this?

    1. Julie, just keep putting one foot in front of the other. It totally sucks, but you can do this. Your son would want you to keep going. There is absolutely no getting over it. Put that thought out of your mind and focus more on finding ways to live your life in your son’s memory. Do things for him. Eventually those things will become more routine and slowly you will realize you’re doing it. You don’t have to like it… but you have to do it. If there is anything I can do to support you, I’m here.

  23. Hi my name is Chris and I lost my son 23yrs old my mum and my dad and my 3mth old granddaughter all in 34 month period life is poo but we all somehow struggle on you are all brave people even if you think your not x

  24. Hello, my son was murdered Aug 5, 2017 today has been 11 months without him he was only 23 at the time we celebrated my baby’s 24th Birthday at the grave site. I having been crying more as the one year mark gets closer. He left behind a beautiful daughter my only grandchild. My heart aches I have attended some counseling but I don’t think it has help all I know is this is the worst pain I have ever felt. Your article makes so much sense u wish people who haven’t lost some one could read it and understand each day is struggle for me. I smile in public but cry in private. And the one thing I dislike is when someone else tell me he is in better place, I know my son is heaven but the words hurt more.

  25. I lost my 2 year old son James just over 3 weeks ago. He choked on a bit of sausage at breakfast while on holiday. The ambulance took 6 minutes to arrive and free the food which despite members of the public trying to help was stuck. He was in intensive care for 2 weeks before losing his fight. He was my whole world and we were together every minute of the day. I have no other children or partner and its so hard to find a reason to live. I don’t believe that suicide will get me to James so for now I’m just surviving praying God will take me soon too

  26. My dear people, on 23rd of July 2017 my son Aristotle, 20 years old, died of leukemia complications. Actually he had beaten leukemia but his immune system was so weak that some kind of bacteria killed him within few hours. There is not a single day I did not cry since that day. I cry because it makes me feel better and because i missed him. I cry because I know that there is not a single day that young people die unexpectedly and that is because we are mortal.

    Grieving is normal and one should experience the way he/she believe is better BUT I believe that living a poor life does not honor his memory. I am trying to do the best for my family and myshelf. Once we are alive we should have hope for ourselves and the people that are alive and we love.

    We all here know the earth did not stop after our loss. We are so many people in the same situation. We have to carry on, remembering and doing our life and the life of others better. More brave ones have the courage to help others in the same situation too.
    My love. May you all find strenght

  27. We lost our son 2014, July 18. He was a suicide and the best thing I can hear is I cannot imagine how you feel. No you don’t and I am so thankful for that and hope you never do understand.
    His birthday is Saturday and we will spend the day just going through memories and pictures.
    Thank you God we were chosen to be his mom and dad and that we had him 44 years.

  28. My wonderful son Michael died a month ago and I can’t breathe. I am just taking up space. I pray pray pray n nothing no one can help me. I don’t want to live the rest of my life with this unbeatable sorrow. Lord help me

  29. My son died in his twenties, 9 years ago. I googled about grief, and am typing this note, at 1:30 in the morning, because I can’t sleep for the pain of his absence, because I still cry all the time. But having said that, I will also say I am better. I’ve learned to manage the pain better.

    I recently had the sad occasion to give (asked for) advice to a friend whose 11 yr old son has died suddenly, in a car accident. And yes, “your grief and your path will be unique to you” was part of it. Also, I didn’t beat around the bush when it came to saying that her pain was going to be everlasting: it was about learning to live with it, not about getting over it. I told her to take every appropriate opportunity to cry and sob and scream and let it out, out, out, if she was so inclined. And lastly, I told her that when she felt ready . . . and it could be months or many years . . . what helps the most is getting back out there in the world, living and contributing again, finding something that focuses you outside yourself, i.e., finding a sense of purpose again, finding a way to make something positive grow from something so horrendously negative.

    My son was my only child, as was hers. He was my reason for getting up in the morning. I had to find a new reason.

  30. Hi my name is Mel. I lost my 19 year old son Alex when he fell and hit his head on June 5 2018. He died from severe brain damage. I miss his smile, his hugs, his laugh….. no one has any idea how I feel to lose my baby when his life was just starting. I feel as if there is a hole in my chest that will never close. He wasn’t only my son but my friend. Yes he respected me as his mother but he knew there was nothing he couldn’t tell me. I’m so damn angry that he is gone…. I cry everyday… think of him everyday. The old Mel is gone… she died with her baby.

  31. Hi Emily, thank you for sharing your thoughts to the rest of us. It was as if you had gone into my heart and arranged the tangled emotions I was troubling with. Every grief path is indeed unique and sharing how hard it is, strangely is more of a relief. I thought at first that my grief for my 6 yr old Matias was just about hiding the feelings; but after reading your blog in does make sense to somehow shout out those troubling feelings in order to gain some sort of stability in life. In my case as a grieving father, it has been tough! Any advice?

  32. My name is Mary. I just lost my son, Gabe on Aug. 21st….3 days ago. He was my boy. Gabe died by suicide and the thought alone of him being in the kind of pain where death was his only option, is tearing me apart. I’m utterly and thoroughly destroyed. I feel like a broken compass, I cant get away anywhere to feel relief from this painful longing for him to come through the door, for reality to change just this one time, for it not to be real.

  33. I just came across your blog. My two year old daughter died yesterday and I feel completely broken. I have no idea how to continue without my baby. I was not prepared to lose her this early in life (botched transplant) and I am racked with guilt for all the things I put off until later. She was so special, beautiful, smart, loving and sassy, would have made a difference in the world. I cannot stop crying enough to focus on my other children, definitely selfish in my grief. Luckily my husband is picking up the slack, but he says that he needs me. I do not think I have anything to give anyone.

  34. I lost a SON 13 years ago he was 20 and a junior at Wentworth College for engineering it feels like yesterday and nobody can possibly feel the pain there is no worst pain than burying your child before you but I try to be strong for my other SON because if it weren’t for him I would of definately killed myself so try to.put away your pain for others that need you

  35. I just lost my son Sept 5th. But i still have trouble believing he is gone. 2 summers ago on my birthday was the first time we took him to the emergency room, they had to give him blood, band his bleeding esophageal varices then transferred him to a liver centerin Westchester. I realized at that time that my son had the disease of alchoholism. The liver dr. Told hom he needed a new liver, but he had to be clean and sober for at least a year before he could be active on the transplant list. Well he had gone to rehab 3 times, and had the banding again before this. I received a call on August 20th that he,was,in the ER. By the morning pf the 21st, my daughter called and said I needed to get to the hospital
    I got in my car and drove 19 hours, stopping only for gas, until i got to the hospital. He was in the MICU, in a coma all full of needles, intubated and on a Ventilator, etc. I stayed there with him for the next 2 weeks, hoping and praying..we had a couple of days when he regained consciousness, and hope went up, but then after a test, his bp dropped, and it was the beginning of the end. I guess I knew in my heart… but as i sat with him on the night of the 4th, i just sat in a wooden chair next to his bed holding his hand all night, and then in the mornin g the drs came and said they had done all they could….
    Im still having so muchh trouble accepting it. I just found a,paper mixed in with his,others, that stated when he left the last rehab, before he came to his sister, that he had end stage liver disease. He knew he was dying…. i feel so much guilt for all the mistakes i made when he was small..At this,point all i can do is,pray that he is at peace, no more suffering… maybe with his grandad… i just wish for a sign of some kind that he is,ok

    Cathi

  36. I lost my oldest son on March 11, 2018, he had just turned 34 years old. The day before he fell ill I buried my dad on March 2, 2018. My son spoke at his grandfather’s funeral and did an amazing job. The very next day he had a cardiac event at my home and I did CPR until the medics arrived, which was only about 5 minutes. He made it to the hospital but had a global brain injury due to lack of oxygen and died a week later. I have a husband and two younger boys who I adore but nobody can take the place of the person you lost. He was not only my son but my confidant and friend. There are no words to describe the overwhelming sadness. I pray for all the parents who have ever lost a child, it’s something you cannot imagine before or after it happens.

  37. My son died on October 25th, 2018. He was eight months old. I decided then that my little boy wasn’t going to watch me from where he was now, seeing that his death had ruined my life. I was determined to make sure he saw that this changed my life for the better – that even though I had lost him, my time with him had changed me for the better. It has been twenty hard years, and as an autistic man, sometimes more daunting, yet sometimes blessed for that uniqueness as well – I am in the final year of a graduate degree from a University and Institute that helped me become some of the man I am today. My boy knows that he inspired determination in me to never take anything for granted, yet to take this moment that I have to its fullest. I still have an incredibly hard time every year at this time, and at his birthday. This pain reminds me just how very much I love him, my boy who is Somewhere Bigger than us both. Thank you for this website, thank you all for the comments – love never dies, and I cherish whatever insights or experiences which allowed me to take this broken heart and see the Light shining through the crevasses. They run as deep as my love does…

  38. My son died on October 25th, 1998. He was eight months old. I decided then that my little boy wasn’t going to watch me from where he was now, seeing that his death had ruined my life. I was determined to make sure he saw that this changed my life for the better – that even though I had lost him, my time with him had changed me for the better. It has been twenty hard years, and as an autistic man, sometimes more daunting, yet sometimes blessed for that uniqueness as well – I am in the final year of a graduate degree from a University and Institute that helped me become some of the man I am today. My boy knows that he inspired determination in me to never take anything for granted, yet to take this moment that I have to its fullest. I still have an incredibly hard time every year at this time, and at his birthday. This pain reminds me just how very much I love him, my boy who is Somewhere Bigger than us both. Thank you for this website, thank you all for the comments – love never dies, and I cherish whatever insights or experiences which allowed me to take this broken heart and see the Light shining through the crevasses. They run as deep as my love does…

  39. Thanks for the article Emily. My wife and I lost our 21 yo son this July to a heart arrhythmia. Your article is definitely on point, there does seem to be some comfort in talking with those who have lost their children, no one else can understand. Both of my boys were autistic (high functioning), my 23 yo still lives with us. I don’t think the grief ever goes away, it just gets a little better with less intensity and frequency. Ditto on the “I’m so sorry, he’s in a better place” etc. I and my wife are Christians and we do believe he is in a better place, but for me, the better place is back home with his family! Anyway, thanks for the article and you are correct, this sucks.

  40. I am so grateful for this forum and the previous comments from the other parents who have lost their children and shared their stories. They hace allowed me to know, ” I AM NOT ALONE”. I lost my 35 year old son, June 12, 2018 from sickle cell anemia disease. He also had kidney disease but it was a fatal episode of the sickle cell that damaged so much of his internal organs that he passed in ICU. The worst thing a parent (s) can hear from the medical community is, ” There’s nothing more they can do” and wait for your child to die before your eyes. His life slip away like sand in your hands. His death has left me and my family DEVASTATED. He was a Bright Light in my life and others. He was an animator in California and worked on major films. His name is listed in the credits and film. I have personally been challenged to find ways to live and move on. He was my biggest cheer leader and supporter. I keep obsessing over what i could have done differently ( via diet( to keep him here being a former health professional and natural remedy advocate. But you can’t FIX sonething you don’t know or hidden. My marriage was fragile before the death but now, we are struggling find our way back to each other and grieve. Thank you again for this forum and support.

  41. feel awful but comfort in reading your stories Aden died January 2017 rwo weeks before University burnt in car crash Had to support his friends now they support me My duaghter grieves with friends cant with me We all do it differently Ive changed Work is good but then Im done no time for people need so much recharge time to put on public face Life has become distraction and holding it in til Im alone Doesnt matter what others suffer you have to go along your path Cant think of memorials or setting up scholarship in his name just busy hurting at the moment AND THATS OK Love to all

  42. My son died on the 2nd if April this year on his moped while traveling to work! I never thought I could feel the pain I feel my hearts broken in to bits! He wasn’t just my son he was my world my everything an all I’m left with is WHY? His baby girl was 18 days old when he died. His life was just beginning!!

  43. I lost my son 27 years ago to suicide, he was 23 and my first born. Every day is a struggle, but through faith and the love of family and friends the struggle gets better. I finally turned everything over to God and He takes me through my journey each day and puts a smile on my face. Nothing, but nothing will ever totally wipe the pain from my heart. I look forward to being able to see my son again in heaven. To all mothers who have suffered the loss of a child or children, I pray each day that your pain is lessened and life goes on and eventually you can extend your hand and comfort those who suffer loss. May God bless and keep each of you.

  44. We just lost our son Daniel about a month ago (cause undetermined) and his 21st Birthday was yesterday. We are completely distraught in trying to move ahead, everything and everywhere are emotional triggers. We have been to several groups , not a good match and evokes amplified emotions. Some have worse stories than ours.
    I just found this site and will read with an open mind to hopefully find some helpful tips to share with my wife and other 19 year young son.
    There are no answers , and no magic pills that can give us solice.

    The only thing that works for short bursts of comfort is when we talk about Daniel, his stories, contagious laughter ,etc. We visit our sons grave at least once a day and tell him stories of our days activities. We do this in an upbeat manner because he loved stories and never wanted us or those around him to be sad.

    I will look for inspiration from these types of blogs.

    Thank you to all know advance.

    Best To All Who Are Struggling Thru

  45. I am sad angry furious hurt alone and annoyed that people say things like it’s Gods plan or he’s in a better place. WTF he was in a good place he was here with us and loved and cared for. I have cut out so many people in my life now as their so called soothing comments do not help.

  46. I lost my 26 year old son on Father’s day six months ago. It was sudden and unexpected. He went to the hospital the night before after him and his friend both done some meth in a casino parking lot. Right after the shot he started freaking out and became delusional. He also had pneumonia from being in jail around other sick people. They didn’t give him any antibiotics because he had no money on his inmate account. I’m still waiting on the cause of death. I don’t know if he died from pneumonia or from the drugs taken that night. He died the next morning. The Dr brought him back four times but his vitals weren’t strong enough to keep him alive. He had only been out of jail three days. His step mom was called by the hospital because there was texts from her on his phone and no one was there with him. They didn’t have an emergency contact for him and he was not in his right mind the whole time so he wasn’t able to tell them my number to call me. I’m really upset because his step mom went up there that night and was called back that morning as soon as he passed away and she didn’t call me. She didn’t call anyone at all. I don’t understand why she didn’t inform me or any of our family. But I’m so mad at her for not calling me that night. I could have stayed there the whole time with him. He didn’t have anyone there when he died. I am so upset with his step mom over this. I haven’t been able to talk to her and ask her why. She didn’t call me until three hours after he passed. I know it wouldn’t have changed the outcome. But I could have been there comforting him the whole time. I would have stayed by his side and talked to him to let him know Mom was there. I should have been there telling him it’ll be ok and that I love him and not to be scared. I should have been there for his last breath and heartbeat. She took that away from me because she didn’t care enough to call his family knowing how critical his situation was then. I may never be able to ask her why. Nothing she can say or no excuse she tried would be acceptable. I’m afraid I would lose it with her. Maybe one day. I hurt so bad since Bubba died. He was cremated and I never take off my necklace with his ashes in them. I talk to him, write him letters, wear his shirt I found a few weeks ago. I have the pants he died in from the hospital. They let me set in his room where he took his last breath. I asked and received a print out of his heartbeat from the night before. I cling onto and collect anything I come across of his belongings. I wish I would have thought to cut a piece of his hair at his viewing. Everything I do have is neatly kept. I wish I had more of him to cherish. You can never have enough pictures, letters, videos, etc to look back on after losing a loved one. Especially your own child. He had my best characteristic, my humor. He loved to make others laugh. No matter what he had to do to get it. I feel like the best part of myself died with him. I don’t feel like I’m the same person and I don’t think I ever will be back to my old self after losing him. I can’t quit thinking about him. Not a day goes by that he’s not on my mind and in my heart. It is still such a raw and open wound. It seems like it happened yesterday everyday. Everyone else has just gone on with their life’s. It’s like old news in the past to everyone. Everyone else but me it seems. His sister’s and brothers miss him deeply. I miss him at such a deeper level. He was such a caring, loving and funny person. He loved his family and doing family things together. He was the glue that held us together and he solved any and all spats we had with each other or anyone else. I am so lost and shattered without him here with us now. It’s really hard to accept the fact that he’s never going to show up at my door again. He’s never going to be at any family gatherings. He’s gone. He’s not coming back. He died and it really sucks. My husband has been amazing through all my moods that change daily. I just wish more people would talk to me about him. Tell me their stories and times they’ve enjoyed with him. I think they just don’t know how to come at me. I want to listen, talk and remember him. He died. But he also existed. He still does in my heart and soul. Is there more emotions and difficulties that I’m going to be faced with along this journey? Any words or thoughts are appreciated. Thanks for making this site. I needed to hear others stories about losing a child.

  47. My son died on February 5, 2018 at the age of 18. He was a U.S. Marine and he died of flesh eating bacteria. My soul is torn to pieces. I raised him and his sisters on my own and we were extremely close. Every day when I wake up he dies all over again. It is unbearable. Every day is exhausting having to fake being normal enough to function in this world where I don’t fit in or belong. I cry every day and behind my public mask I’m screaming at the horror of it all.

  48. I feel for all the moms and dads represented here. I joined this club on January 7, 2018 when my 24 year old warm, loving, giving, handsome, heart of gold, son died unexpectedly in a car accident. Never thought such pain, sorrow, grief and heartache was possible. He had just graduated college and found a great job, on his way to adult life and doing great. This is not how his story was supposed to end.. I had looked forward to weddings, family, grandkids… Most people disappeared after the funeral and we never heard from or saw them again. Others change topics when we mention his name. A few, including his friends from school and work, continue to visit, talk and laugh with us about him often, and for this we are eternally grateful. Only by God’s grace have I survived this year. One foot in front of the other. You are right. “The journey we walk is our own. No one can tell us how to do it. We simply have to do whatever we feel is right in the moment for us.” Thanks for that epiphany! We should all do what works for our individual situation. No Judging. For me, my faith in God is working ever so slowly and giving me an anchor. I don’t understand it all, the questions are still there and some days I just want to sleep….. and never wake up, but I trust that one day I will see the full picture. Heaven feels much closer now, my fear of death is gone and I can not wait for the reunion. Nothing here in this world gives me joy or satisfaction any longer. The laughter is gone. There’s no getting over that “amputation” but as I approach his 1st heavenly birthday, I can begin to see just a wee bit tiny glimmer of sunshine through the foggy and cloudy days. Every day I ask for strength to get up out of bed and show love and compassion to others, even when I don’t feel like it, for I know my son would love that. Thank you all for letting me know I am not alone in this grief. Sending Love and Light your way.

  49. I too have lost my son dec 10 2018. His girlfriend called me in the am and said he would not wake up to go to work. My world has fell apart. He was not only my son but my best friend. 28 yrs old. I held his hand for 3 hrs at his funeral. I wish so much it was me instead. I agree with Emily, I still want to tell people to shut up! NOBODY will ever understand unless it happens to them. I never thought a person could cry so much. I dont think I will ever get over it. Everything I look at reminds me of him. I can say that I DO know what its like. It happened to me.

    1. So true that no one will fully understand until it happens to them. We will never get over the loss of our children. Hugs!

  50. This thread helped me. My son died almost 3 years ago in April. I am always sad & hurting. I have never felt pain like this. I wish all the time I could just go and be with him. What is the point of living like this . I, after almost 3 years, just go through life doing what I have to do to
    get by. I have no ambition to do anything. I have another son but he doesn’t truly understand what I am feeling. He hates seeing me so down . I saw a friend today who told me straight out. Look, this happened to YOU. It really happened. You don’t have to worry about trying to be happy in front of your family if you are not feeling happy. It hit me that I have been trying to act happy around everyone in my family to make them feel better but my girlfriend said please stop doing that. Take the time to find a way to make yourself feel better. I know my life is altered forever. This really broke me!! I will never adjust to being without Peter. He was intelligent, artistic, funny as he could be, & there wasn’t anything he couldn’t do, fix or build. He was so loving and so kind hearted. He talked to me one day about the Solar System & the Universe and I am sitting there thinking how the heck does he know all of this. I was in awe of his knowledge. He was so smart and it is such a loss for me that I have cried everyday and night for almost 3 years. Today my friend set me straight. When she said this HAPPENED to you and you don’t have to worry about making anyone happy but yourself because everyone else is able to deal with it. It sort of shocked me into telling myself this boy was MY son and this is MY grief and I will deal with it as I choose and hopefully I will find a way to look forward to seeing him again. I have to believe I will see his sweet smile and face again. I simply cannot believe otherwise. That is what I will hold onto now.

  51. Hello all,
    We lost our youngest of 2 sons, 2 months after he turned 19 in a motorcycle accident Easter weekend of 2017. He was in the Navy stationed in Jacksonville Fl. when it happened. We have learned so much and still have a way to go but I will share what I can to help.
    Our loved ones are not in pain here. We are! That being said, It is our journey alone to figure out how to continue without them and get through our pain and heartache. We have all experienced the changes to our address book. At first I was upset that some of the people that we expected to come through did not. Sound familiar? Well now I embrace the changes. The old contacts that cannot handle all of our pain because it is so incomprehensible, I simply let go. They cannot afford us with anything that will help. I do not fault them and simply letting go of them puts that behind me. They may come back, or they may not. Either way, that’s one less thing to bring me down.
    My wife and seeking every resource available to navigate this mess. People further on can shed light and share with us their experience. We are very open to meet anyone who has had a loss and the other people who give us Love and caring through our journey. It is a trade off that we wouldn’t have any other way. There are many people out there who have not had similar losses but that does not mean that they don’t have anything for us. Graces will come from some of the least likely places. Be on the lookout for them. Embrace them and nurture them.
    We all have a unique view of life now. This is “YOUR” journey. Your life. So dig deep because you are the one that is in charge of your story. I am working on finding myself and learning to live with this mess. But I have seen cases of complicated grief and I wish not to continue to my end in that way.
    We are left to be their legacy and share who they were to others that are in our address book.

    Embrace the journey, Share the memories

  52. Emily, thank you for all these courages words & advice. My son mykel died of an overdose on November 19,2014. Emily for me it feel like yesterday. The pain in my heart is unbearable at times but when it stops hurting I get upset. I feel like that pain will keep me and my son together. I’ve always been a single mother with no help. I love all you advice and I will try hard to get better but right now I feel like I probably will die from a broken heart. I still have my daughter and now she’s 26, she passed her brother in age now and that was hard for the both of us. I just don’t know what to do anymore and I can’t tell the difference between grieving & depression. I can’t get out of bed. Every year I say I will try a lilttle harder but it’s the worse. Idk thank you for this article. LOve Susan Broken hearted mommy.

    1. Sending you so much love and strength Susan! This is not easy at all. Every day is a new chance. I look at it as I am living my life for both of us. I know he is right beside me and so I want to make him proud (for whatever that is worth). Take it one day at a time. Find something you can do in his honor that helps. Grief and depression can go hand-in-hand, that’s for sure. Take care of yourself. I created a Facebook group to connect bereaved parents to share/connect and support each other. You are welcome to join (assuming you are on Facebook). https://www.facebook.com/groups/livingafterchildloss/ Hugs!

  53. My son 26.. too died of an accidental overdose 4 months ago..& I’m still in disbelief…His last words were..”I’m Sorry..I’m Sorry”…So much guilt & regrets…mixed emotions…Prayer keeps me going..

  54. While I agree with you on most of what you said here, I have to say I disagree that saying “I am sorry ” is the worst thing you can say. I will say that “I am sorry for your loss” is like running fingernails down a chalkboard for me. But a true “I am sorry” or I am so sorry” is to me true sympathy when maybe you just don’t know what else to say. It’s certainly better than what a few of my friends have done – totally ignore what has happened, never mention my husband’s name. Now that kills me inside!!!! We are all different. There are no rules what helps – what comforts.

  55. My son died of a seizure 11-18-2018. I found him in his bedroom. on the floor. He was 33, and a loving, open person. It had been so very hard. I have support, even friends who have lost sons. Slowly I am breathing and crying when I am alone. Two weeks ago my ex-husband called, at work, to get information. My son knew him for the soulless cretin he was . My son cut all ties with my ex when he was 20. The SOB tried to play the victim, when he could not even say he was sorry. I am back to the lonely room to cry. I miss him. I cling to the knowledge that reincarnation will unite he and I.

  56. I felt so comforted whilst reading ur blog. I lost my fiance when i was 7 months pregnant 5 years ago in a biking accident and 2 years ago, my 2 year old son drowned. His nanny who has been part of our family for 15years left the door open and he ran out and managed to go to the pool. My nanny also drowned with him trying to save him. If I can give any parent that lost a child: u will never get over the loss of ur child! U learn to live with it daily. U will cry rivers of tears for years to come. That’s OK, live in ur moment. The first year is hard but the second and third year is the worst. So many “firsts” u have to do on ur own. I wish u strength to get thru it….lastly, u will never be the same person ever again. Find the new u, find what helps u cope with ur child’s death and trying to get thru it daily….I realised every death has a name eg: a wife or husband dies, u r a widow, but their is no name for parents losing a child….the kids shud be burying us, not the other way around…. To all u parents who lost children, I salute u! Its a long road….I def do not wish this pain or suffering waking up daily knowing ur child is gone…much love and hugs Bron

  57. I write poetry to help me deal with the murder of my only son. He would be laughing at me probably, since he was the wordsmith with his music writing and singing. This is what I get out of his death. It’s not really advice since I haven’t come very far in the five years I’ve been on this grief journey. My mantra is, “I’m ok with not being ok.” Don’t know if that’s very healthy, but we were inseparable and now we’re forever separated and I just miss him. ..the past him and the future him. Anyway, here’s what that grief is about for me. Thank you for providing this site to those of us who have lost the most precious gift we were ever given. Maybe that’s my advice…find someone who understands, because they’re on this same journey.

    Hopes and dreams laid aside
    Gifts unopened, tears undried
    A life of promise, so much to fill
    How could this be, my God’s will?

    So much unsaid, so much love to give
    From us both if you had lived
    Talks and advice I would love to share
    Of things on which we both did care

    Life and love, all things to attend
    Baseball, music, being with friends
    So many things that you could be
    My life I would give for you to see

    My greatest fear was to lose my son
    Now I’ve lost him my fear has gone
    There’s nothing left for me to fear
    I’ve lost the one I held so dear

    The worst is over, the horror is past
    The thing I feared most has happened at last
    No more do I worry…no more do I care
    Nothing can hurt when a heart isn’t there

    I’ve been through hell and survived somehow
    Nothing else can touch me now
    There’s nothing to fear of life to come
    I lost it all when I lost my son

  58. Hi Emily your blog has helped me thank you for that . I lost my eldest son to suicide just 10 weeks ago I’m doing anything it takes to survive at this point . I hope one day I can find some peace . Much love to all on here x

  59. Im not ready , its only 2 weeks my world stoped with his dead , im only walking dead , only mother nows the pain lusing child , does it ever pass to let me live , i have my wonderfull douther i must live , but my only thout to go to him , but i cant

  60. My son died when he fell off a cliff last February, one year ago and I am just as heartbroken and in pieces now. I cry so much and the only way I feel any comfort is to go to his grave each day as that is where I left him. I make sure it looks nice and I talk to him and tell how much I love and miss him. I can release my grief there as I feel like I am with him. He was 26 when he died and 27 when I buried him. The shock hits me everyday and the pain never goes away.

  61. I lost my son on March 4, 2019. He was going to be 22 years old on July 8, 2019. He was accepted to Western Michigan University and was waiting for a few more colleges to respond. He wanted to be a nurse. Very handsome, worked out all the time. Vegan for the past 2 years. I have an empty spot in the center of my chest. It hurts all the time unless I am sleeping.
    Taylor, I have loved you, I love you and I will always love you. Dad

  62. Hi I lost my son on the 29th Jan 2019 he died from carbon monoxide poisoning I was talking to him the night before it was sudden and shocking I don’t know how to come to terms with it I have no closure to everyone else it’s history to me I’m in a world of mental torture and real physical pain and I’m not coping I don’t know how Paul was 37 years old I’m lost

  63. I found my beautiful 21 year old son Eric face down on his bed on March 3 at 2:00. We were getting ready for his brothers 13th birthday party. I had just spoken with him a half an hour prior. I gave him narcan and did cpr. 9-1-1 called and it took a half hour for them to get a small pulse. He was on life support for 5 days before they declared him brain dead. For the past month I have struggled with what I could have done differently…we have learned from the medical examiner that it was fentanyl. Now I feel angry and feel he was murdered. He was a beautiful soul with much to offer this world. When he was in the hospital hundreds of people came to see him. Hospital staff said they had never seen anything like it. The amount of lives he touched was amazing, he truly cared about and wanted to help people. I have 5 other children and he had a very close relationship with all of them, even in the midst of his pain and struggle with addiction. Even in his death he helped people and saved 6 lives through organ donation. If it weren’t for my husband and other children I would not want to go on living. There is a huge hole in my life that can never be filled. He was my best friend. This is an absolutely inexplicable pain…I am praying for strength

    1. Please know you did everything you could with the information you had. Addiction is powerful and is 100% to blame here. It sounds like your son was an amazing man. Hold onto those memories. This is not an easy road (as you know). There will always be a huge hole. If you are on Facebook, I have a privatae group for bereaved parents to connect and support each other. It definitely helps to know you aren’t alone (or crazy as I so often felt). If/when you are ready, the link is below. Sending lots of love!
      https://www.facebook.com/groups/livingafterchildloss/

  64. Our only child, Joshua died August 29, 2016 from an accidental prescription overdose from fentanyl, Xanax and oxycodone. He told his mother and I he loved us, went to bed and we found him the next morning in his bed, gone. He was my best friend as well as my son, he even told his friends that his dad was his best friend, and we had some of his friends tell us he would tell them how much he loved his parents, and for that I’m so thankful. He had just turned 29 2 weeks prior to his passing. Even now almost 3 years later it’s still devastating, the house is so quiet, my wife and I talk about him a lot. We know that all we have in this world is God and each other. Shortly after the funeral everyone stayed away and we’ve just worked through this with each other and the Lord. Some days are what I call good, but they’re really not, some days are horrible, you are right it seems that sometimes the longer it’s been the harder it gets, not easier. I used to think right after it happened that time would somehow help, but now I know I’ll never “get over it”, it will always be a part of who I am. My wife and I have changed so much and now I know life will always be “before” and “after”. Sorry for this being so long, I just miss my baby in heaven, and I just want to know that I’ll see him again, that helps keep me going. And I know that where he’s at he loves us and we love him, now more than ever, and that bond will NEVER be broken.

  65. I lost my 26 yr old son on 3-23-18. He spent 82 days in icu and lost his fight. It’s still surreal. It’s day by day-some days better than others. I appreciate the postings/comments. I know I am not alone.

  66. My son, (the youngest of three), who is 20 was recently taken away suddenly in a horrible accident on 5/26.
    He was struck by a train and killed.
    He had earbuds in. As a music lover, he had them in regularly.
    The investigation video showed by the time he felt or heard the train, it was directly behind him and he had no time to react.
    I will never forget when the police came with this news. It is shocking and something you never expect or want to hear.
    He was at the medical examiner’s office and I wasn’t allowed to see him. He was identified by his dental records.
    His young, strong body was broken and battered beyond repair or revival. It killed me to think of what his body suffered or the shock and then fear as he turned his head to look behind him at the last moment of his life.
    I never got to say goodbye or hold his hand or tell him it would be ok or that I loved him.
    He leaves behind his little boy who he fought so hard to see for the last 18 months. He was finally getting the recognition he so rightfully deserved. He fought for his son right from his birth to be involved. Despite his young age, he was ready for this role.
    This past father’s day was excruciating.
    He will never see his son again. This breaks me. I will now have to continue the fight to see him. I mourn the father he was going to be. I mourn the bright and promising future he will never get or that he won’t see 21.
    I am angry and hurt.
    He was a loyal friend. He was charismatic and funny. He was positive and happy.
    I look at his memorial card of his vibrant, smiling face with his bright, shining eyes and at his cremated remains and I cannot believe it is him now. I would do anything to change this. I have never experienced such sadness, it is deep and it is truly grips you.
    He got ripped off. The dynamic has changed, forever. I know my life will always have a void and the sadness will always be there in the background, clenching my heart and throat.
    I worry about him and wonder if he’s ok. Why wasn’t there any divine intervention in his case? It feels so unfair and unjust.
    I don’t know what to believe in anymore, I just have to believe that he is somewhere good. He truly deserves that.
    Nothing could ever prepare a person or family for this.
    As long as I am alive, he will continue to be loved, cherished and always remembered.

    1. I lost my son Thabiso on 5th July 2019 two days after he just turned 10. He was Autistic but on that day he was fine. I was with him 15 minutes before he died we were cuddling and hugging. My helper was feeding him when he started struggling to breath, by the time i was called he was in a bad state and died in my arms.
      Im so angry, so confused, most of the time i just want to be alone. I can not sleep at night i always wish i could hv saved my baby

  67. My son Ashton was senselessly murdered 9 months ago. All of my adult life I’ve been the go to person to help others with their issues, problems and worries. When my Ashton was murdered, I figured out very quickly, I couldn’t do that anymore. Listening to their problems really ticked me off because my son is dead and you’re complaining about what? I agree, everyone’s grief is different. People have to do what’s best for them! Best for their mental health, cause me and PTSD been holding hands. I didn’t take antidepressants because I thought it best to feel the pain in its fullness and not cover it up with addictive meds. After all, the pain would still be there and if feeling it keeps me connected to my Ashton, so be it! My advice is like yours, be selfish and oh well! Self care is seemingly selfish, but very necessary!

  68. My son died just over 2 weeks ago. It was very sudden and a big shock to us all. We don’t know the cause as yet he had epilepsy and also had a problem with prescription medication. He was a very vulnerable young man aged 28. He loved disney, star wars and musical theatre. Lost both my parents a few years back and thought of a natural order to life meant I or my wife would be next with our children following but no fate had a nasty hand to play. We have always struggled and this feels like we are being punished by some higher power who is just wicked. I am so angry and upset its just not fair or right that evil people live charmed lives while the best people struggle and are besieged by tragedy.

  69. Today is our son’s birthday….he would be 23 years of age. A drunk driver killed him last year on July 26, 2018. He was only 21! Since his birthday was in a few weeks….we had surprised him with his birthday gift early, I am so glad we did. Our son was coming home from work…he had called us and we were on the phone with him when the drunk driver hit him head on. Our son was a beautiful soul…so smart, kind, humble…it hurts so much to have lost him. He was our only child…and we will never see him experience life. I get so angry at times with people that always tell you it will be ok. No it is not…they haven’t lost a child! I miss our son so much! The hurt and pain my husband and I experience is unimaginable.

  70. My 37 year old son died, September 5,2019, after suffering with end stage cirrhosis of the liver. I lost my husband to colon cancer in 2015 then my brother December 3 of last year. So I know a little about grief. And I feel the same way. The day my son passed my daughter-in-law”s mother kept following me Hugging me and saying, it’s going to be all right, it was for the best, he’s better off and God know what he’s doing. If she has said these things one more time, I would have throat punched her. It was not fair, nor was he better off. Or was it me that wasn’t better off. Either. Way I wanted him with me.

    Thank you for writing this.

  71. The prevailing conclusion from reading all of these emails, is that life is not worth living, and children not worth having, and I believe this. Life is a fatal condition. As much as I adore my two surviving sons and worship my 18 year old son who died in my arms, I wish I’d never had them. I’d rather never known them than have subjected them to the horror that is life, with its travails and vicissitudes and ultimate end. Nor do I believe in god and the ridiculous fantasy of heaven. One piece of advice for the grieving: we all came from somewhere, and we all go somewhere. This is the only truth. Grieve on.

  72. I lost my son 37yrs old, my only child on July 10, 2019. I will never be same and I don’t want to, i want to remember this hurt so that I never forget the love I have for him. The way I see it, my grief is between me and my son. He was born into my arms, no one felt my joy of his birth, the bond in my heart. No one can understand my love, no one can understand my pain for this one beautiful child. It doesn’t matter what people say, do and feel. I loved him first, I’ll love him last
    Kevin’s mom forever32

    1. You will never forget your love, it will never change. My fear was always forgetting. It’s like as long as the pain stayed, I felt close to my son. I have found that every memory I have is tucked away and things trigger for me every day. It reinforced the fact I will never forget. While I will always say I feel closest to him in those moments of pain, I have learned to see/feel him in moments of joy too. He is still all around you. There is no love like a mother’s love. Hugs!

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