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My son died. My love for him did not

My relationship with Charles after his death has continued and evolved. The idea that I’d have a relationship with someone who is dead makes me sound like I’m in need of a good therapist or that I am unable to accept his death.

Grief is something that lives along side me now. Talking to the air, consulting my beloved dead for advice, or laughing about something I know he’d find funny is part of that new relationship, if you could call it that. As my grief has changed and softened, so has the relationship.

I have not read tarot cards, consulted an 8 ball, or used an ouija board to communicate with my beloved dead but even if I did and it helped me cope, there would no grief shame. As long as these rituals didn’t take over my life, there would be no harm in them.

I don’t have a child I can hug or hold or watch graduate or get married. But there I times I feel his presence even if that merely exists in my own heart and head.

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx 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 substance use disorder 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, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, 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. Professional Speaker Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

4 thoughts on “My son died. My love for him did not”

  1. Oh Anne,
    I’m so there. I can’t do otherwise. My heart still doesn’t want to accept. I put something on FB recently that describes the profound loss and isolation felt. This “relationship” is something others can’t understand till being there. I carry something of Jill’s with me everywhere I travel; I write her name in the sand. It kills me to not buy her presents. I always bought all 3 something from every vacation without them no matter what age. Now I look for things to hang in her tree.
    I look at the night sky and talk out loud.
    I ask can you see me…sometimes. It sounds crazy…I know I’m not, but it’s so painful.
    I’m glad I can write this somewhere besides my own journal knowing you and “the tribe” will understand!

  2. Absolutely. It’s necessary for my own survival and sanity. I think most bereaved parents would agree. I sure liked our old relationship better though.

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