I found this poem online today while reading through some posts on a support forum. I have been trying to find out who to credit, but I can’t find the source. If you happen to know, please leave a comment.
To Be A Man In Grief
To be a man in grief,
Since “men don’t cry” and “men are strong”,
No tears can bring relief.
It must be very difficult to stand up to the test
and field calls and visitors so she can get some rest.
They always ask if she’s alright and what she’s going through,
But seldom take his hand and ask, “My friend, but how are you?”
He hears her crying in the night and thinks his heart will break.
He dries her tears and comforts her, but “stays strong” for her sake.
It must be very difficult to start each day anew
And try to be so very brave. He lost his child too.
And, how very true. My husband hears me cry and I can see how helpless he feels. He tells me he feels lost, sad and numb. We do alternate giving each other comfort. It’s just not always easy. We talk to each other a lot, we sit quietly together and enjoy the company of our little bugger of a cat named Immie. She seems to just know that we are sad. She never leaves our side, she puts her paws on our arms or on our faces. She sniffs at the tears on our faces.
I know that my husband is grieving just as deeply as I am. He’s staying as strong as he can be for me.
I have been fortunate to have such an outpouring of support, but I think he feels left out. Very few are texting him to ask him how he is or sending him messages with sentiments about his strength. About his courage. About his bravery. About his loss.
He lost his child, too.
Mina Gobler says
From Mina, Susan’s good friend:
Grieving can either bring couples together or split them apart and much of that is due to the fact that men and women often grieve differently. If a man remains “strong and silent,” his wife may think that he really doesn’t understand what she’s going through. There can be anger and resentment at the pain she is feeling. If you and your husband can share your feelings and YOU acknowledge his feelings, then perhaps what others do or don’t say really doesn’t matter as much.
This is no perfect way to deal with your pain and loss. There’s been a death in your family and you are mourning the loss of what might have been. My heartfelt condolences on your loss.
Hello, Mina! You couldn’t be more right. My husband and I are fortunate in that we’ve been taught many coping skills over the course of time through the help of a very well-trained psychologist as well as our individual counselors. I’m proud of how we’re both navigating our grief both individually and as a couple. We have spent countless time just lying together in bed crying, talking and reflecting. While I have my own ways of coping, (this being one of them), I believe we are in different stages of our healing. I am confident that with the help of our counselors as well as his own introspection, he will find his own words, too. xo, isabel
Uncle Paul & I worry about how Randy is handling the loss! I know he is sensitive & I have turned to you to comfort him in the past! Have sent him a text eveyday letting him know he & of course you are in our thoughts & prayers. I know you will comfort one another- that’s who you are. Please know we are here for you both-if we can help in any way-just call.