Whether you always made a big deal of Father’s Day or it barely raised a mention in your household there is no doubt that this year it will feel like it’s everywhere and unrelenting. 
 
Continual reminders of the life you no longer have, rubbing salt into your wounded heart. 
 
Unfortunately, however much you want to put your head under the duvet and not come out until Tuesday you can’t. You have to continue to be both parents to your kids who also are being bombarded with images of kids playing or bonding with their Dad’s. So what can you do to get through this as best you can? 
Widows Guide to Surviving Fathers Day

How to help your family survive Father's Day 

Make it a team effort. Talk to your kids ahead of time to discuss what they’d like to do to mark the day or not mark it at all. Be sure to let them air their ideas and show them you have listened equally you have your say too – if something is going to be too difficult for you it is OK to say so. Talk to the school 
Find out if there are any Father’s Day related activities going on at school and ensure your kids have options in terms of whether to take part or not. 
Make some memories, share old ones. Is there something he always wanted to do but didn’t get a chance to? Could you do this with the kids, or something similar? For example you might not be able to get tickets to see his favourite team play but maybe you could watch a video of their famous match. 
Other ideas could be: 
Watching a favourite film or TV programme 
Playing his favourite game or sport 
Revisit a favourite place 
Go through photos and videos to recall past family occasions / events 
Make his favourite food / open a favoured drink maybe as a picnic in a favoured spot 
Make/write cards and read them out loud for you all to hear 
Make a memory book. Write down all your favourite quotes /sayings of his in a notebook and or paste in cards/messages /pictures. This can be added to over time. 
Messages in water. Write messages to Dad on rice paper, roll it into a cylinder or fold the paper into a boat and float it in a lake or stream and watch it gradually sink 
 
Above all, remember this is just another day, you got through the last one, you’ll get through the next one. Be kind to yourself always. 
The book When Children Grieve,by the authors of The Grief Recovery Handbook John W James & Russell Friedman, is available for those who would like learn more about helping their children cope with loss. 
 
You may also want to learn more about our Helping Children with Loss programmes, offered for teachers and parents who want to assist a child in their care through a loss of any kind. 
About the Author 
Carole Henderson
Carole Henderson is Managing Director and Senior Trainer at Grief Recovery Europe and was the first-ever Grief Recovery trainer in the UK. Since 2010 she has trained hundreds of Specialists from over 30 different countries to help others move beyond loss. She has been featured in The Guardian, the Times Educational Supplement (TES), Jeremy Vine, The Sun and numerous other publications.  
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