Chapter 2: Understanding your grief

What may help

I've been there
Valerie says having information about grief in children and adults helped her cope. (3:22)
Sharon describes her grief experience, how she recognized that she needed help five years after her son died.(3:22)Video transcript
Khadijah felt relief at first and then kept herself so busy, she didn't have time to feel sad for a couple of years. (3:22)

I am allowed to be sad. I'm allowed to be mad. I am allowed to have days where I don't want to get out of bed and I don't want to talk to anyone.

Everyone manages the complex thoughts and feelings that can come with grief in different ways. Below are some ideas that may help you with your grief: 

  • Recognize that you have had a profound loss and may have many difficult or conflicting feelings for some time.
  • Give yourself time to identify your feelings and to acknowledge them as normal. You may wish to write or draw as a way to express them.
  • Find supportive people who can listen to your thoughts and feelings without judgment. Reach out to trusted friends, family members, your family physician, or a faith leader.
  • Many bereaved parents find it helpful to meet with others who have experienced the death of their child.
  • Consider meeting with an experienced grief counsellor.
  • Treat yourself with patience and kindness. Allow yourself the time to figure out what you need – or don’t need – at this time; and honour your needs. 


Helpful resources – Making sense of intense emotions