Mommy guilt is an integral part of parenting, and one feels it on several occasions. You may experience it when you fail to give enough time to your kids or cook the food of their choice. But guilt can take its worst form when you lose a child. You may blame yourself for letting the child die or even being alive when your kid is dead. Your existence seems like a burden when the guilt takes over. But you cannot do anything to change the situation. However, not dealing with the negative feelings can affect your health, career, and relationships in the long run. A coping strategy is essential to handle the stress and move on. Let us share a few actionable tips to deal with mommy guilt after losing a child.
Accept the truth
Acceptance is perhaps the most daunting challenge when coping with the death of a child. You have the kid at home one morning and lose them forever a couple of hours later. Imagine how a negligent accident, a crashed flight, or a terror attack can turn your world upside down. Knowing that your child will never walk in through the door again is devastating, but it is also a truth you need to accept. You must come to terms with reality sooner than later to avoid the guilt of not protecting your kid from the worst.
Admit your guilt
Besides accepting your loss, you must admit your guilt, whether it is real or false. Remember that it is normal to feel guilty for sending your child to school on the day of the attack or mishap. You may experience it even if you shouldn’t have changed the situation, so be open to admitting it. You will definitely feel much better because it is the first step on the road to healing. Speak about your feelings to your partner or discuss them with a friend or a therapist. You can also write down your thoughts to get them out of your head.
Raise a voice
Losing your child due to a negligent car accident, medical error, or terror attack is devastating. Not raising a voice can compound your guilt, so you must do it sooner than later. You can seek justice against negligence and claim compensation for your loss. Think beyond personal injury cases because the Zadroga Act is an example of serving justice to terror attack victims. You can approach a 9/11 settlement law firm to seek compensation for the terminal illness of your child during the attacks. Getting justice is often enough to deal with mommy guilt and regain peace of mind.
Forgiving yourself is another surefire way to handle the guilt of losing your child. A mishap happens because it has to happen, so it is beyond human control. You may think of a hundred ways you could have changed the situation, but nothing makes sense. Replaying the incident in your mind will only worsen the stress, so you should avoid it. Focus on being more realistic and forgiving yourself. It is the only way to overcome your pain and start afresh without bitter memories. Moms always go the extra mile to give the best to their children, and you were no less.
Seek support to move on
Nothing can change your love for your child, and you will never forget them as long as you live. But moving on is the only option because you may have other kids to raise or plan more in the future. Seeking support to move on can help you as a coping strategy to overcome mommy guilt. Your partner is the best support system because he probably feels the same grief and pain. In fact, he may be struggling with daddy guilt for not doing his bit to stop the death of the child. Stick together through the tough time to ease the healing process. You can also look for support from other kids in the family if they are old enough to understand the situation. Friends, colleagues, and neighbors can also join the group to help you heal.
Mommy guilt is a natural reaction to the loss of a child because one feels responsible for protecting their child. But the feeling can slow down the healing process and make it more painful than you imagine. You must pick a coping strategy to get through and move on. Follow these tips to give up on the guilt and embrace the fond memories of your child for a lifetime.
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