Adult Grief After a Traumatic Death

of a grandchild due to substance impaired driving, you may never experience pain as intense or urgent as what you feel now. You may even feel the pain physically, centralized in one part of your body, such as in your chest or stomach. On the other hand, you may feel as though it has taken over your entire being. Grandparents as Parents

You may feel powerless to help.

A parent who loses an adult child may find themselves once more in the role of parent if they assume the parenting role to a grandchild or grandchildren. Such circumstances bring challenges and rewards that most people aren’t prepared for. As a grandparent raising a grandchild you will have to adapt to help your grieving grandchild

continue to grow and learn while they grieve. Even if you have been involved in a child’s life; school, activities, rules, and play may now be a constant. Your resources and energy may be stretched as you try to cope with the changes in your own life and the life of your grandchild.

Life may begin to have meaning again.

Coping with the Death of a Grandchild There are two major tasks to focus on. The first is to work through your own grief. The second is to feel helpful to your bereaved child who lost a child. These two tasks make grief complicated because you actually have to deal with both at the same time. Here are some suggestions that may be helpful: • Read about grief. It is important to understand what you and your child are experiencing. • Be open and share your feelings. Your openness sets a good example for your child. • Talk about your deceased grandchild. Mention his/her name. • Be available to listen frequently to your child. Sometimes there are no words.

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