Sunday, January 14, 2007

I'm Not Your Superwoman

When I was actively grieving, a lot of people liked to describe me as "strong." They didn't realize that I was simply surviving. But what do you do when everyone thinks you're handling your loss well, while inside you're a sniveling mess?

I spent some time mulling this over and realized two things: First it is fruitless to try to convince someone that you're not "strong." They feel if they were in your situation they'd be curled in a corner somewhere. The truth is, if you actually reacted the way they think they would, they probably wouldn't come around!

Second, regardless of how much you want to help someone understand your weakness and emptiness, they could never completely understand.

The solution? Build a network of people who can come very close to understanding your feelings. There are numerous groups on the Internet, but I strongly urge you to find a local parent's grief support group. Try it for three sessions and see if it doesn't help.

Don't get me wrong, while in the throes of grief it isn't a wise decision to cut yourself off from friends and family. After all, they make up a huge part of who we are and can truly help us in more ways than we know.

BUT. There comes a point when you have to understand that as much as friends and family love us, they aren't very likely to understand our experience. They may share our pain for a short time, but then comes a point when they need to see you stop hurting. We can't hold this against them.

It is agony for loved ones to see us in a perpetual state of pain, so they begin to rush us forward. This is where the support group comes in handy.

Support Group Benefits:
  • They won't get tired of your stories
  • There will be others there who've been wearing these shoes longer, and have wisdom that will help your healing
  • You will have the opportunity to help someone else through their grief. Right now you may not feel able (or willing) and that's okay, but it won't be long before a nugget of wisdom tumbles from your lips that can change someone's life. It may even be your own.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Group meeting allow for hurting member to have an open honest conversation without being judged. I'm thankful for that I encourage other to attend it for themselves and to help other with their painful healing.

Healing Anonymously