Posts tagged “Invisible Losses”

Once again, the academic year has dished out lots of losses for teachers, students and parents alike. 
 
Loss of normal 
Loss of routine 
Perhaps even loss of loved ones or colleagues  
 
As parents, you might also be feeling a loss of hopes and expectations for your children. 
 
If you're a teacher, you may feel a lack of support from Ofqual and the government, and maybe your school, and you may feel a loss of safety due to constant exposure to others. 
The pain of losing a child cannot be described in words. It doesn’t matter if the child is still young, an adult, or still in the womb – a child is a part of us and the pain of losing that extraordinary person is incomprehensibly heartbreaking. The loss of a child creates a ripple effect that can touch the lives of relatives, friends, and the larger community. 
 
There are plenty of heartfelt stories, blogs, books and groups dedicated to people who have been bereaved by the loss of a child. In this article we are turning our focus to common misconceptions around child loss so that we can bring comfort and hope to those who are grieving. 
Loss of a child
In just a few weeks, mothers all over the UK will be receiving gifts from their children and partners to celebrate motherhood. We would like to look at the holiday from a less common perspective, acknowledging those who may be experiencing more painful emotions than happy ones on Mothering Sunday. 
 
Some of us may find this occasion difficult to celebrate because we have never been able to experience motherhood even though it has been one of our hopes and dreams. 
 
Others may struggle with this day because motherhood has not been everything they expected it to be. 
Mothering Sunday
One of the most painful of experiences when you’re grieving is having a disturbing image of your loved one’s final hours, days, or weeks etched on your mind that you keep flashing back to. 
 
If your relative or friend died from COVID-19, our hearts go out to you. You may have seen your relative in hospital via a video call from their hospital bed. Your last image may have been seeing them in the back of an ambulance with an oxygen mask on. Your mind may have made up its own image if you weren’t able to see them. 
Stuck on a painful lasting image
Our hearts go out to the families and friends who have not been able to share last moments with their loved ones during the global pandemic and haven’t been able to say goodbye, or have had to say goodbye virtually. 
 
You may feel guilt that your loved one has died alone, even though it’s out of your control. And then the funeral. Friends and relatives have had the ritual of saying goodbye taken away from them; something that is part of the normal grieving process. 
2020 A year of loss
Why the people you expect to support you after loss can disappear 
 
If you’ve been unfortunate enough to go through a significant loss, you may have found that the loss continued in the form of friends who didn’t show up. 
 
This is something that we hear from grievers on a regular basis. While we’re not here to make excuses for them, we can give you some plausible explanations. 
 
The Kiss of Death on a Friendship
To mark World Alzheimer’s Month, we’d like to acknowledge everyone who is living or has lived through their loved one’s decline from this disease. Our hearts go out to you. 
 
From the early signs, when you barely notice anything is wrong, to witnessing confusion, to the point where your loved one barely recognises you - all come with a layer of heartbreak and feelings of loss. Each appointment that brings another reminder of gradual decline can hit you like a tonne of bricks. 
Grieving the Living: Alzheimer's
Lockdown has brought about a sudden and unexpected loss of income for thousands. Even those who have been put on the furlough scheme are still not in receipt of their full monthly income. Then there are those who have been excluded from government schemes, such as the newly self-employed, company directors, and freelance workers. Some have taken pay cuts, and others have lost their jobs altogether. 
 
This level of loss can be devastating. It’s the loss of your financial security, loss of perhaps being able to buy food, and could mean the loss of your home. There are no ceremonies around the loss of finances and the dreams that went with them. We are left feeling unfinished and lost. 
Loss of financial security in Lockdown
It doesn't matter if it's to a new home, a new school, or to a different country - all of us will have moved at some point in our lives. 
 
Many moves happen during childhood, when young families expand and build homes, experience a job transfer, or find a better suited school for their children. Well-meaning parents, anticipating that the move may be difficult, scary or painful for their child, try to ward off any negative feelings by making positive, hopeful statements. 
Moving can cause grief - how to help your child cope
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