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How can you grieve when you have children?

My uncle's funeral is tomorrow, and today it's starting to hit home that he's gone, and will never be back. There has been many time I wanted to break down and cry, but my kids are 2 and 1, and I don't want them to see mommy all sad, crazy and a mess, so I hold back the tears as best as I can and keep my mind occupied, but I can only do that for so long until I'm back to looking at his pictures and so forth,......

I just need to get it all out, but how can I when i'm a single mom of 2, and have no free time? Is it OK to go to the room and cry, leave my DD in the living room watching TV. I don't want to feel quilty for taking time out for myself to grieve, and away from my children ..... i'm lost.

 
knicole0708

Asked by knicole0708 at 1:30 PM on Mar. 21, 2011 in General Parenting

Level 23 (17,012 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (10)
  • You NEED to take the time to grieve. And it's FINE to let them SEE you grieving. Death is part of life. Yes, they're young to learn that lesson but we never get to choose the time when it's taught. It also allows them a chance to exercise their own sense of nurturing for YOU.

    No hiding. No more bottling. Have your cry. To not do so is far more unhealthy than crying in front of the kids.
    gdiamante

    Answer by gdiamante at 1:34 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • My kids are 3 and 1, and I lost my father just before Christmas. I felt the same way as you, but there came a point when I just couldn't keep it in anymore. It was nice to hold them while I cried. No, they didn't know what was going on, and my older one cried with me just because I was crying...but it was a comfort, too, having them there with me and not worrying so much. When my older one sees me crying now, he just comes up and gives me a hug, and I have to tell you, that makes me feel loads better than trying to bottle it up, even if I do end up breaking down sometimes.
    DragonRiderMD

    Answer by DragonRiderMD at 1:41 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • I'm so sorry for your loss! I think you need to allow yourself to grieve. If that means putting the baby in the crib and letting the older one watch TV for a bit, then that's what you need to do. If you don't, all your grief will come out eventually, and maybe in a less desirable manner.
    kristinhin

    Answer by kristinhin at 1:33 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • Yes, that is OK. It will be a longer process for you because you are trying to hold back so much, but you will get through it. You also might write down your thoughts during the day and at bedtime. It might help you sleep better. I hope your mind is flooded with happy memories soon. I am so sorry for your loss. hug
    elizabr

    Answer by elizabr at 1:33 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • I am so sorry about your loss, but maybe you can do this when they are put away for the night, then you can let it all out. Do you have any friends you can talk to?
    older

    Answer by older at 1:35 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • Leaving the kids alone for 10-15mins in a safe place is more then okay. You need to have time to let what you are feeling out. Put the baby in the crib and the oldest in the room with a movie on. Take a shower and let whatever tears or your feelings out, while the shower is on. That way the kids can not hear you. And, it gives you time to yourself.
    Novmeber2006

    Answer by Novmeber2006 at 2:34 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • It's ok for kids to see mom cry and grieve. They need models for how to process negative emotions and deal with those. It's ok to feel sad and to cry when you are hurting, and if you don't teach them that then no one probably ever will.
    riotgrrl

    Answer by riotgrrl at 3:19 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • Death and grief and sadness is a part of life. While your children are young, you are still allowed to grieve. My father passed VERY unexpectedly last July 5th. I was naturally devestated. My children were 24, 19, 16, 4 and 3. My 4 yr old had tons of questions as to why I was so sad, and where did grandpa go, is he coming back etc. Your kids are young. I cried myself to sleep plenty, or in my car. But remember, that this is a part of life, and they will be exposed to this whether you like it or not.
    salexander

    Answer by salexander at 3:30 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • Children know when something is wrong even when you pretend that you're fine! There are good reasons to let them see your sadness. You are showing that you will miss your uncle and that people are supposed to be sad when this happens. If people just act happy and like everything is fine, then if a child ever feels sad when someone or something like a pet dies, they will feel that there is something wrong with them. There are a couple of good articles on children and death at:
    http://www.helpmealison.com/death--how-to-talk-to-your-child.html

    I wish you the best!
    AlisonAstair

    Answer by AlisonAstair at 6:53 PM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • I agree with kristinhin said.
    jilligan362

    Answer by jilligan362 at 12:54 PM on Mar. 22, 2011

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