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How can I love someone who is dead?

love someone who has died

Maybe there are times you have talked about your loved one who died and gotten the question, “Don’t you think you should have moved on from all that by now?”

The truth is, a child or a person’s death does not erase them from our family tree or our friend group.

And just because they are not with us on earth, doesn’t mean we stop loving them, thinking about them, or missing them. I buried my child not his memory or my love for him. So why do people who’ve never been through a devastating loss want to pass judgment and dictate a journey they know nothing about? And hopefully never do.

The odd thing is that my relationship with my beloved dead continues to evolve even seven years after his death. That doesn’t mean I “can’t let go.” It means I loved someone enough to keep their spirit alive in a healthy and productive way.  Living with and accepting the loss doesn’t mean that I gave up and grew out of grief. It means I learned to walk beside it.  

I talk to Charles and imagine him as more experienced wherever he is. I don’t see him as a lot older which is sort of ironic since I do imagine him having matured emotionally but I have frozen his appearance to age 20.  I do ask for his help and his presence at times when I need it. I hear him talking to me and he still makes me laugh as I hear his responses. Had you told me I’d have a relationship with a deceased child I would have looked at you like you had four noses growing out of your arm. 

If someone says something to me about it? My answer is usually, “I’ll stop talking about my deceased child when you stop talking about your living ones.” I won’t let anyone grief shame me.

I will stop loving the child I lost when my own heart stops beating.

The secret to getting unstuck in grief

 

 

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.

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