UNLESS YOU'VE LOST A CHILD
Don't ask us if we are over it yet. We'll never be over it. A part of us died with our child.
Don't tell us they are in a better place. They are not here with us where they belong.
Don't say at least they are not suffering. We haven't come to terms with why they suffered at all.
Don't tell us at least we have other children. Which of your children would you have sacrificed?
Don't ask us if we feel better. Bereavement isn't a condition that clears up.
Don't force your beliefs on us. Not all of us have the same faith.
Don't tell us at least we had our child for so many years. What year would you choose for your child to die?
Don't tell us God never gives us more than we can bear. Right now we don't feel we can handle anything else.
Don't avoid us. We don't have a contagious disease, just unbearable pain.Don't tell us you know how we feel,
unless you have lost a child. No other loss can compare to losing a child. It's not the natural order of things. Don't take
our anger personally. We don't know who we are angry at or why and lash out at those closest to us.
Don't whisper behind us when we enter a room. We are in pain, but not deaf.
Don't stop calling us after
the initial loss. Our grief does not stop there and we need to know others are thinking of us.
Don't be offended when we don't return calls right away. We take each moment as it comes and some are worse
Don't tell us to get on with our lives. We each grieve differently and in our own
time frame. Grief can not be governed by any clock or calendar.
Do say you are sorry. We're sorry, too, and you saying
that you share our sorrow is far better than saying any of those tired cliches you don't really mean anyway. Just say you're
Do put your arms around us and hold us. We need your strength to get us through each day.Do say you remember
our child, if you do. Memories are all we have left and we cherish them.
Do let us talk about our child. Our child lived and still lives on in our hearts, forever.
Do mention our child's name. It will not make us sad or hurt our feelings.
Do let us cry. Crying is an important part of the grief process. Cry with us if you want to.
Do remember us on special dates. Our child's birth date, death date and holidays are
a very lonely and difficult time for us without our child.
Do send us cards on those dates saying you remember our child. We do.
Do show our family that you care. Sometimes we forget to do that in our own pain.
Do be thankful for children. Nothing hurts us worse than seeing other people in pain.
~ Original version was written by Mary Cleckley, Atlanta, GA ~
~ Revised by Wendy Lockman ~