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A Father's Grief

It must be very difficult 
To be a man in grief, 
Since "men don't cry" 
and "men are strong" 
No tears can bring relief. 

It must be very difficult 
To stand up to the test, 
And field the calls and visitors 
So she can get some rest. 

They always ask if she's all right 
And what she's going through. 
But seldom take his hand and ask, 
"My friend, but how are you?" 

He hears her crying in the night
And thinks his heart will break. 
He dries her tears and comforts her, 
But "stays strong" for her sake. 

It must be very difficult 
To start each day anew. 
And try to be so very brave- 
He lost his baby too.

Author Unknown

 

 

His Grief

Men often find that their needs get overshadowed by their partners needs, but like them you too may be dealing with many things, such as;

♥ Feelings of confusion and involvement yet powerlessness.


♥ With attention focused on your partner, your equally valid feelings are often overlooked, leaving you to deal with them alone.


♥ Focusing on your partner's needs and not being able to think about losing your baby and what this means to you.


♥ Anxiety about admitting your own worries in case they add to your partner's fears.


♥ Believing that you have to be strong and brave, and this preventing you from releasing your own pain.


♥ Guilt about feelings of relief if you hadn't wanted the baby, or if you had even just thought that at any time during the pregnancy.


♥ Struggling to find the 'right' things to say, or how to best support your partner.


♥ Trying to deal with the situation logically, wanting to make things ok when this is something you cannot fix.

 

If you deny yourself the chance to grieve in your own way you may find it harder to heal. You may want to put the whole thing behind you and move on, and become frustrated when your partner still needs lots of support. You might even experience resentment towards your partner and her need to grieve so deeply, especially if she has what seem to you to be unreasonable emotional outbursts.

 

Try to accept her moods without judgement and be supportive. Share with her how you are feeling about losing the baby. Listen when she wants to talk and resist changing the subject. Above all just love her through this time, she will always remember it and appriciate it, even if it may not seem so at the time.

Remember that the way you each process your grief will be different, just as the way you each bonded with your expected baby was different. Don't be afraid to get outside help to support you together to find understanding and acceptance, to learn how to find healing together. You might feel as if your partner expects you to meet all her emotional needs, this is not only unrealistic but also an unfair burden on you. It is vital that you both feel able to grieve in your own way.

 

 

 

"Gone but not forgotten, although we are apart,

 your spirit lives within me, forever in my heart."

 Author unknown

 

 

Resources For Grieving Dads

The STILL Project hosted a Google Hangout in which five men shared about their losses, it is available to view on You Tube.

 

Website for grieving dads 

♥ Grieving Dads Project  -  www.grievingdads.com

♥ Elm City Dad

 

Facebook and Blogs 

♥ The Fellowship of His Suffering

♥ A Blog for Father’s When a Baby Dies

 

Books written by Fathers

♥ Grieving Dads: To The Brink and Back - By Kelly Farley

♥ When A Man Faces Grief - By James E. Miller

♥ Tender Fingerprints - By Brad Stetsen

♥ A bereaved Father - By Steve Younis

♥ A Father's Story - By Lionel Dahmer

 

Books about Grieving

♥ Couple Communication After a Baby Dies