Many people experience a “roller coaster” of emotions after the death of their child. Your feelings can range from sadness and heartache, anger, emptiness, isolation, maybe even a sense of relief, to loneliness, numbness, etc to the physical pain of a sore, aching heart, and many more.
Initially some people may feel disconnected from the real world. They feel as if they are just existing, without any emotional connection. It’s as if you’re in “auto-pilot” mode getting through each day on a purely operational level. Others may feel like they are unable to concentrate or complete the simplest task. Some caregivers feel quite lost and without purpose or identity. It may feel as if your entire world has fallen apart and is totally out of balance, and you doubt whether you will be able to return to a new normal ever again.
By understanding more about the grieving process and receiving help with bereavement from appropriately trained professionals, families can learn to live with their grief and begin rebuilding their lives. Bereavement support aims to assist parents and siblings integrate the loss of a child into the rebuilding of their lives in a meaningful and compassionate way.
Bereavement support is provided by several organisations in South Africa and there are many international organisations where you can get online support. You could try the following:
- The Compassionate Friends of South Africa. Refer to the website to find a chapter closest to your community.
- Hospice Association of South Africa. Refer to the website to find a hospice closest to your community.
- Khululeka Grief Support
- You could also try your local church or other faith-based organisations in your community.
Useful Websites and Social Media:
- Courageous Parent Network
- AnamCara Supporting Parents After Bereavement
- Child Bereavement UK
- Bereaved Parents of the USA
- Still Standing Magazine
- Our Facebook Page
- Patch People Who Care – A closed Facebook group for bereaved parents and family members
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