What children are taught to believe about dealing with loss
You may have heard the expression, “in crisis, you return to old behavior.” To illustrate the point from your own experience, think about any of the times that you’ve had an argument with your spouse or a close relative or friend. When the words and emotions start flying around, how often have you said or done something that you had promised yourself you would never say or do again? In the crisis of an argument or heated discussion, we often return to thoughts, feelings and statements that we had hoped not to repeat.
Here’s another example where your own experience can help you see how you may have carried ideas forward from childhood, and how they may have affected you and your children later.
Did I just say that . . .
As a parent, have you ever opened your mouth and said something to your child, and then realized that the voice of your own mother or father had just popped out of your mouth? “You can’t swim until an hour after lunch.” there is a good chance that you heard that comment as a child. Yet have you ever stopped to ask yourself – or, better yet, a doctor – whether or not that warning is accurate? Quite often the ideas and language you use come from having heard them twenty, thirty or forty years ago. You may not have consciously had that thought since you were a child, but in a crisis .you return to old behavior, or old beliefs. It is unlikely that, during the crisis itself, you will even question whether or not the behavior or belief is valid or helpful.
Examining those ideas that are not helpful
Please do not interpret what we have just said to mean that everything you heard your parents say is wrong. Most of what your parents taught you is helpful to assist you in living a safe and happy life. Instead, we are simply interested in examining those ideas that are not helpful for your children. We are merely suggesting that when certain situations arise, your brain automatically searches for information on that topic. Most of the information has been stored in your brain since childhood, waiting to be used in the appropriate set of circumstances. Unfortunately, most of the information you have stored about dealing with loss is probably not correct.
The mother in the opening story here, faces with a crisis of her husband’s death, relied on her stored memories to find an obsolete, incorrect idea: Be strong for your child. Her son, being a natural mimic, copied what he saw her doing.
What’s the problem, and whose problem is it?
Remember the questions posed in the previous blog What’s the problem, and whose problem is it? here
The first part of the problem is that a child has experienced a loss.
The second part of the problem is that as the parents or guardians, in order to help your child, you may need better information than that which you yourself learned early on.
We know you would like to be able to help your child, so we are going to address the second part of the problem first.
From the book. . When Children Grieve written by John W James and Russell Friedman with Dr. Leslie Landon Matthews
There is help . .
If you are interested in participating in the Renew Your Possibility – As Children Grieve 6 week Study group, sign up here.
This is a complimentary study group that will provide you some incredibly valuable safety tips and tools that you will be able to use for the rest of your life and your children’s lives. I guarantee it.
Or, if you are not ready to take that step, purchase the book “When Children Grieve here . .
Or download one of the ebooks under the resources page and read up on grief.
Another option is to Schedule a 15 minute complimentary call to share what your experiencing so you can ask me questions.
Just take that first step. Do something that you have not done before. It’s ok, that your not ok, yet please don’t stay stuck in grief. There is light on the other side.
Remember, “The beginning is the most important part of the work.” Plato
Yours in Gratitude and to Renewing Your Possibility. . .
Debbie Your Grief Recovery Specialist®