How can I love a dead child?

After my son Charles died by suicide, I had to learn to accept the loss –a brutal and agonizing process. I wondered where all that love I had for my child was going to go since he was no longer with me as a living being.

Somehow I thought I would redistribute that love elsewhere. I do share it more now as a salve to the ache that loss has left. But I have never stopped loving or talking to Charles, which if you saw me, would look a lot like I was talking to the air.

I’ve developed a different kind of relationship with my youngest child since his death. I made the effort to understand depression, addiction and suicide. And after reading his music and his messages, I got to know Charles from a different point of view and better than I had ever known him while he was alive. That was difficult to accept.

I would never have thought I could have a relationship with someone who had died. Of course it’s different and I will always grieve his death.

But now when I laugh, I feel him laughing with me. When I’m on stage talking about him, I feel him next to me. That love I have for my child won’t ever stop– until my own heart does.

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked mental health speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my younger son, Charles to addiction and suicide on June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational mental health keynotes, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, anxiety, coping strategies/resilience, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Mental Health Speakers Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

One thought on “How can I love a dead child?”

  1. You are so right Anne Moss. The love lives on. A relationship continues. The adjustment is agonizing. All this.

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