About Project

This project is designed to reach out to all bereaved dads and to provide a conduit to share their stories. One of my goals is to bring awareness to the impacts that child loss has on fathers and to let society know that it’s okay for a father to grieve the loss of a child. A father shouldn’t have to hide his pain or feel ashamed to show his emotions.

Since I too am a bereaved father, I realize that there isn’t much information or support services for men that have lost children. As men, we may get a few pages in a grief book that tell us how to respond to the grieving mother, but I haven’t been able to find many books that tell us how to help ourselves. Often times, men feel shame for not being able to “get over it” or “get back at it” like society thinks we should.

The ultimate goal of this project is to create a book that represents a cross-section of bereaved fathers. I want anyone who picks up this book to be able to relate with someone else’s story so that they don’t feel so alone in their journey through grief. To let them know that other dads have traveled this path or are currently on the same path.

The stories you will read on this site will not only surprise you, they will move you to look at things a little differently.  Not to take “I’m fine, don’t worry about me” at face value and the stories will challenge you to dig a little deeper as a grieving dad, grief professional or a close family/friend to a father that has lost a child.  I am so glad you found this blog, help me spread the word.

If you are interested in learning more about this project or are interested in participating as a grieving dad, please visit the project website at GrievingDads.com.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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68 Responses to About Project

  1. cmogs says:

    I am a stay at home dad to my 3 year old son. When he was 18 months old we lost his grandad (his mother’s dad,) to a very short and brutal fight with cancer. My son and his grandad had a very strong loving bond, and I cried at the time for what my son would be missing out on, and I did get rather angry (not outwardly, just internally and managed to keep a lid on the anger.)
    Just as my partner appeared to be coming out the other side, of a year of grief for her dad. We found out in Dec 2016 that we were expecting another child. I was landed and over Christmas and the first few months of this year, I could see the full brightness of my partner coming back. For the first time in a long time I could see the sparkle in her eyes, like when we first met.
    On March 23rd we had our 20 week scan and everything was fine. My son was there as well as my mam and dad, we found out we were having a girl, and I was just completely made up and so happy. By the evening of the 23rd me and my partner were besotted with Jessica. Jessica was the name my partners dad had always called her as a nickname, so the name was a nod to her father.
    The next week flew by, but on the 30th of March, exactly a week after the 20 week scan, my partner wanted to get Jessica checked out as something didn’t feel right. They did a sample test and then rushed us straight in to one of the ultra-scan rooms, taking us in to the room in front of a waiting room packed with expectant mums waiting their turn. That’s when I realized something wasn’t right. I will never forget being asked “do you want to move your chair closer to the bed” (not the screen, but the bed) or the quick glances between the two members of staff, when the scan came on screen and there was lack of movement in the chest area of Jessica, which had been so visible on the last scan just a week before. The lady operating the scan was taking two measurements of Jessica, and the head measurement was no were near straight and at an angle, the panic was visible. Then we were told that Jessica’s heart had stopped.
    We were given some privacy to start to process what had just happened. And in those probably 10 mins, I realized that not only had Jessica died, but all the dreams I had for her had died too, all the love we would share was now gone, my son had lost his sister and would not for a long time understand what he will have missed out on. How do we tell our son what has happed? How do we explain why Jessica is no longer in mummy’s belly? How do I tell my mam and dad? They have been so invested in my son and in this pregnancy, they have already spoken about taking Jessica and her brother to Disneyland in around 10 years time. As soon as I tell them, I know I will kill that dream for them, and then I try and think of a way around giving my mam and dad news, that I know will hurt so deep, but there is no way around it, as the dad of Jessica I would be the one telling them and ripping their dreams up. I then remember that I was the one that wanted to find out the sex of the baby, and I had researched it and found out that there was less than 4 weeks from finding out the sex, and 24 weeks (in the UK) when a hospital can do something to help save a child. But I decided that “I shouldn’t be silly, be positive, the chances of something happening in those 4 weeks was to small to take in to account” but I had pushed to find out the sex, so in my mind I was to blame for opening everyone up to more pain, because once we knew the sex and the name, Jessica became visibly even more really to everyone.
    Watching someone you love go through the pain of childbirth, for only a couple of hours less than the time our son was born, but knowing that it was only for sadness and broken dreams, was horrendous.
    Its now two weeks since Jessica was born, and we have been through hell. I’m trying to carry on, but now the short but frequent bouts of crying have subsided, I just feel empty in every respect. I play in a band, and we did a gig the Friday after Jessica was born, and I pushed myself to do it, just to try and get some normality back in my life. I was ok until 20 mins in to the second set, when out of no wear a trapdoor in my gut just opened and all my feelings disappeared, I felt completely empty, and had to mentally push myself though the rest of the gig, I just stood there looking at my guitar for the rest of the gig, feeling alone empty and just thinking of Jessica, in pub full of people singing and dancing.
    As I said earlier its now been two weeks since Jessica was born, and I now feel empty and constantly on edge. I’m trying to balance supporting my partner, and dealing with my own feelings but am finding it near impossible. Even talking to one of my best friends who use to lodge with me, and has kids but isn’t having anymore, I don’t feel like I can be completely honest about what im feeling. I feel that I would be putting to much on him, and that I should find a way to deal with my feelings on my own, but I know that’s not healthy, but I don’t know what else to do!

  2. In 2013, my ex-girlfriend and I went through the hurdles of being eighteen and in the moment. After a series of events, in which I accepted her decision to abort the child, but hoped she would change her mind, she put herself on plan b more than a month after the conception of our child. Following the miscarriage, we drifted apart, and after a large fight we broke up and I became ostracized from my biggest support group and left myself close off from the world. Growing up in a sexually abusive and negligent family, my only true dream in life was to raise my child or children in a happy and supportive manner. I’ve never gotten over this event, and every spring my depression and self-deprecation become more destructive to my life. I feel like I failed my child, that I will never be able to right that wrong.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Hi Nick. Thank you for sharing your story and pain. I am sorry for the loss of your child. One thing I’ve learned is that guilt can be a great destroyer in your life. We all have things we regret in our lives that weight us down and impact us mentally and physically. It sounds like you have had a rough road as a child. Not sure if you have given it any thought, but I do believe a counselor that specializes in the psychological impacts of an abortion would be helpful. The processing of the event along with forgiving yourself and others involved will put you on the path of “righting a wrong” that you feel. I do believe that we are often the last to forgive ourselves and tend to beat ourselves up. Talk to your child, write them a letter and take your pain and doing something with your life that will make your child proud of their dad. You cant change what happened, but you can change the impact it has on your life and others lives. Live with a purpose of “righting the wrong.”

      Peace.

      Kelly

  3. David says:

    I lost a newborn son in March 2014. To this day, the pain is as fresh as it was then. I have learned to live broken. It will never make sense to me, but I can tell you that I’m a better person because of him and I love more than I have before. Count your blessings each day and soak in the memories.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Hi David. Thanks for sharing your story and struggles regarding the loss of your beautiful baby boy. Very sorry for your loss. It’s a painful journey that we all have to live. And yes, broken.

      I agree with you 100% regarding the loss making you a “better person”. I feel the same way regarding the loss of my two children. I approach life from a completely different perspective.

      Wishing you peace.

      Kelly

    • Joe says:

      I just lost my first son three days before he was suppose to be born due to an umbilical chord accident . Everett Joseph Gatlin 2/13/2017. My world is crushed . The pain my wife and I are experiencing is unlike anything we have felt. I’m reaching for lifelines . Everett was a miracle IVF baby after years of failed attempts at conception. That just adds to the pain of our loss.

      • GrievingDads says:

        Hi Joe. Really hard to read your story because we also went through IVF to conceive both of our children. I know how much you have your heart and hopes set on bringing this joyous baby into the world and into the love of your family. I’ve reached for lifelines myself in the past and they are there, you just have to keep reaching. You found a place here at Grieving Dads that is full of people that know the pain you are dealing with right now. Pain that only those that have walked it can understand.

        Please continue to share your story and feel free to vent here any time. Also, we are all here to help you through this darkness.

        Wishing you peace.

        Kelly

  4. Harrison says:

    Hi, I lost my youngest daughter when she was ten years old and that was almost nineteen years ago. When I am alone I still cry. When my other two daughters ask me what I want for fathers day, Christmas or my birthday, I have to hold my breath before I say “I just want Caroline back”. Losing her has destroyed me on the inside. I outwardly portray someone getting on with life, although my confidence has vanished, I live on the edge of emotion all day every day. I struggle, I long to talk to her once again.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Hi Harrison. Thank you for sharing your story on here. It has been ten years for me and I try to keep moving and working towards “hope” to keep me from stopping and thinking about what happened to me, my wife and my children. Just last week I was reading a “feel good” book and the dog in the book died. It triggered something in me that was a major release. I cried like for about 15 minutes. Its been awhile since I wept like that, but it was obviously needed. This isn’t something you get over, its something you adjust too and try to exist in the best way you can. I lost my confidence for years but have been fortunate enough to restore enough to function again. Actually, my confidence is back to a point I now longer tolerate BS in my life from anyone.

      Wishing you peace my friend.

      Kelly

    • John Ardern says:

      I’m in the same situation! My daughter was aged 36 when I lost her to brain cancer nearly 3 years ago.
      I have 3 other daughters, who have lost a sister.
      Same as you, whenever I’m asked what I want for my birthday/ Christmas/ Father’s Day, I tell everyone the truth : I want Steph my daughter back please!
      Every time I see or stay with my other daughters, (I’ve just returned from a weekend with her closest sister) I holdback the tears – but now I’m back home, I am so sad and can’t stop crying,
      I’m in Manchester in England, so if anyone else wants to get in touch, I’d love to hear from you and share our grief!

  5. cody says:

    My wife and I were only married a short time before we found out we were going to have a child. A few months into it we miscarried. I didn’t take it well but I did eventually get past it to an extent. I still think about it but now more than before. She would have been born in a few weeks and I can’t stop thinking about it. I want to talk to people but if I try I can’t make words. I’m crying writing this. My wife feels the same and grieves like me and we can do so together but every little thing reminds me.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Hey Cody. Thanks for stopping by the site and sharing your story. What you are feeling and experiencing is perfectly normal. I am not sure how long its been since your loss, but its been 10 and 12 years since our losses and I still get a little down as we approach their birthdays/death days. Its gotten much better over the years, but it still exists. I think most parents you speak with will say that.

      You telling your story here is “talking to people”. Its healthy to tell your story, it helps get the pain out, even if its just a little at a time.

      Wishing you peace my friend.

      Kelly

      • cody says:

        i’ve kept this page bookmarked just to see how other people have done and it does help. To answer your question its today. Today is the day I would have been a father.

    • Jonas says:

      Cody, I can’t seem to reply to your Nov 10th posting. This reply is related to that post. You are a father and always will be, don’t shortchange that.

  6. Alain says:

    I have recently lost my 14 month old daughter to sepsis. She woke up from her nap with a 104 degree temp. And within 12 hours she was gone. She passed away May 9th of 2015. My life will never be the same without her.

    • Anthony says:

      Alain, I am so very sorry for your loss. I wish we never had to share this pain, I wish you never had to go through it.

    • Matthew says:

      Alain,
      I am sorry for your loss. I too recently lost my 6 year old son Aiden to sepsis. He was mis diagnosed with the flu on a Monday morning and he died on Thursday February 25, 2016. It turned out he actually had Strep throat. The dr never did a swab or any test. The bacteria infection got into his blood and sepsis set in. My life stopped that day.

  7. Pingback: Not Just Pink | In Pursuit of a Family

  8. My wife suffered an early miscarriage almost one month ago. Not a day goes by that I don’t cry.
    Nobody tells you how to grieve as a father and husband. As a man. Everybody thinks that ‘at least I still have my two older sons,’ not knowing how much hurt that causes.
    Thank you for this site. So lad I found it through Lost Innocents.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Jared – I am sorry for your loss. You are correct, there is play book or “how to” manual for navigating this path. I learned to call people out when they said stupid things. I heard “well, you can adopt” a lot. As if my losses could be easily replaced with a new child.

      You are welcome for the site, I am happy to hear it has provided some healing and a sense of community.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  9. James Cook says:

    I didn’t know where to post this. I lost my son back on Oct 12, 1998. Worst day of life. I didnt even get to see him alive. I was living in Texas and she wanted to go to Wisconsin to be with her dad and step mom. They wanted me to move up there. I refused. I was gonna take care of us. Well she went into labor. He lived 11 hours. By the time I got there I had to watch em pull my son out of a refrigerator. Hold his dead body. I have never forgiven myself and live with that guilt everyday. I have never let myself grieve. I don’t know how. But it hurts even almost 17 years later. I can’t deal with it and it has had a devastating effect on my life. I wish this website would have been around back then. I don’t know how to deal with it. My upbringing and other factors make it hard to express much less talj,about it. Sorry for rambling on.

  10. Robert Lukacs says:

    Thank you for creating this site. You don’t see much out there for fathers who have lost kids. I lost my Daughter Sept. 18 2010, she was 2 months short of being nine years old. She had an undetected artery defect near her brain stem. One day at a post office she just collapsed and that was it. We took her off life support the next day. Cant really describe the shock of something like that. Having a happy healthy kid tossing around a package while waiting in line and then having her collapse and die the next. First few months dont really seem real. Its like your child went on some kind of vacation and will be back soon. Your job doesnt really get it. They figure well lets be understanding and give him 2 weeks. Then they just expect you to be normal afterwords. For the first few weeks you stay distracted because the house is full of family that help. Then they go home. Cant expect them to stay forever. Then reality sets in. Your home with your spouse and remaining child, ours was 5 at the time. Your the survivors. Then the guilt creeps in and stays for a very long time. Why didnt I figure out she had this problem, why did I yell at her that day about whatever, why didnt I do this or that. I suck as a father, blah blah blah. You basically function in a haze. You start going to the counseling sessions, never helped me much. Having a few hours of a understanding pep talk followed by candle lighting and singing doesnt really do much for me. Some who are believers in god find some relief. I dont believe myself so I live in the cold reality of the situation, my child is dead, gone, never coming back, never going to be seen, held touched heard by me again. I watch neighbor kids who were her friends grow up. I see the happy pictures on Facebook. I see normal happy people enjoying themselves. I put a fake front on and do so for our surviving child. Its a distraction but she needs us and she needs normalcy. I hold down a job, fortunately its not to taxing mentally. It pays just enough to keep us going. I couldnt handle much more these days. I am not the career driven person I used to be. Now 5 years later not much has changed. I accept she is gone now thats about it. I think of her every few minutes still. I cry at times alone in my office. I have really bad days and I have tolerable ones. I figure this is about as good as it gets. The marriage continues, mostly out of necessity for both of us.

    • Anthony says:

      Robert, I identify with you. I lost my daughter when she was 8 1/2. She seemed to have a bladder infection, next thing I know she is having a major seizure a week later and died 3 days after that of post viral encephalitis. I identify with most of what you have been through and how you feel. I cannot take stress and I have no problem with lashing out at assholes so I could never hold down a customer service job. I have a hard time dealing with anything stressful. It’s been year 7 for me and it’s been a rough year. I think I waited at least 2 years for her to magically come home. But now like you I accept that she is gone. My wife and I almost split then. Somehow I kept it together and it only made us stronger as a couple. The grief is still strong and overwhelming every day. But we do have a new daughter. She will be 3 in October. She is a focus, and she is wonderful. But she does not take the hurt and pain away. She is someone though we can enjoy in the moment and the future. It does not make me miss my other daughter any less and I still have some very bad nights. Her Birthday and death are almost 6 months apart. Which give me a couple very bad moments during the year where I want to be left the fuck alone. Like my daughter, I would have gladly given my life so you could still be with her. No father deserves to experience this. I am so very sorry for your loss. Never stop talking about her, and never stop sharing who she was and never stop learning from her. My heart breaks for you.

  11. Michael Wheatley says:

    Thank you for your kind and wise words. It sounds wrong, but it is comforting to know I am not alone in suffering this awful grief, even though I would not wish it on anyone. It is so hard. I break down many times a day. Some days are slightly better, and I think I am readjusting, others are just totally black. I am now a different person, and I hope this new person will one day thrive.

  12. Michael Wheatley says:

    I don’t know if writing this will help. My son Jack was a week short of his 5th birthday. He was my hero, my idol and my heaven. He was robustly fit and healthy. He had a headache on the Sunday. He was totally fine the next day, but we kept him off school for a couple of days. On Friday he felt unwell and was sick in the night. We nursed him Saturday, but that night he was being sick. We monitored him, and he was able to go to the toilet by himself, and was totally lucid. The next morning we took him to a doctor, who checked him over, said he probably had a virus, and gave us rehydration sachets because of the vomiting, which had now stopped. We went home and put him in bed and he drank the fluids and kept them down. Good we thought. We left him for ten minutes to eat, and my partner checked on him, and his skin had gone mottled, and hands and feet cold. I called an ambulance, and he was taken into emergency. They put him on a rehydration drip, and pumped him full of antibiotics. His colour started to improve, and things looked good. He then crashed. Blood pressure dropping, organs starting to fail. This is sepsis, where the immune system can’t handle something and the body goes into overdrive. His organs failing, he had cardiac arrest and died. This was two months ago, and they are still trying to work out what happened. The doctor at the hospital said they never expected this outcome when he was brought in. School on Thursday, dead on Sunday. He was my world, and I feared this would happen because he gave me the ultimate joy. My heart is broken. I am on strong anti depressants, which I presume must be helping. I have a darling 9 year old daughter, who I am trying to concentrate on, but I feel so so desprately sad. Please tell me things will get better

    • GrievingDads says:

      Michael – I am so very sorry for the loss of your sweet little boy. Your story is heartbreaking and I know you are hurting. This is a pain most people will never understand, however, the few that have to experience the death of a child know it all to well.

      Thank you for having the courage to tell your story and Jack’s story. Its important to be able to talk about the events of the day and also for you to tell the world how much you love Jack. Keep talking, writing and sharing your experience with others. You will survive even though there will be times you don’t think you will. During those times, reach out to others that are going through or have traveled through it. I had people on speed dial that I would call and have them talk me off the ledge. Find these people and be open to allowing them to help you. I didn’t do this after my first loss, but was forced to after my second loss. I wouldn’t have survived if I didn’t. Allow yourself to be transparent and vulnerable. Then when you are strong enough, find a purpose/cause that honors Jack and allows an outlet for you to heal in honor of him. This is a long long process and there are not short cuts. If you put in the work, you will survive and possible even thrive again. I would say I have gotten to the point where I feel like I thrive most days.

      Wishing you peace. Keep sharing.

      Kelly

    • Brian Prouty says:

      Hi Michael,
      My name is Brian. I lost my 5 year old son Ben, he was my whole world… He died in an accident September 1, 2013. I also have a daughter age 8, I really can’t even put into words what I’ve been through. I want you to know that you are not alone.

  13. Doug says:

    I cannot believe that I have found support for fathers after so many years of being ….ignored? We lost a child to late term miscarriage 15+ yrs ago. The only counseling received was to have another child as soon as possible…………….There was nothing available for the father…..very limited support for the mother. We had another child, another beautiful daughter. Shortly afterwards my wife asked about getting surgically sterilized. I did what was asked and had a vasectomy. Now it is 16 yrs later and I am depressed when it comes to the days I should be celebrating with the child that was lost. I have received no emotional support from her and feel extremely isolated…….

    • GrievingDads says:

      Doug – I am happy you found use, but heart broken that you feel so isolated. Know you are not, there are thousands of grieving dads the visit these pages, looking for support and hoping what their feeling isn’t “unique”. I can assure you what you have felt and are feeling is completely normal in a world that isn’t comfortable with a grieving male. Although you lost your child, I ask that you still celebrate them and why not start today. If you wife chooses to do things differently, that is her decision, but that doesn’t mean you cant plant a tree, run a race or even release balloons on the day that they were lost. Celebrate and remember your sweet baby they way you want to, not how someone else decides to do it.

      Wishing you peace,

      Kelly

  14. Hi everyone, I have read the comments in here and I can honestly tell all of you dads that I understand your loss. I too, have lost a child and my biggest question with it all was Why? Its been 8 years since my little girl drowned and that is 8 years of living hell! But, I can tell you all that there is hope for you. I can tell you all that as ridiculous as it sounds….I know the answer to my Why question. I open this invitation to any of you who are hurting deeply. I open this invitation to any of you who are looking for answers. I will talk to any of you by email or just comments on my daughters memorial page on Facebook. Search… Elizabeth Claire Blackwell (gone but not forgotten). I urge you fathers, and mothers to reach out and open up to someone who has been there. I look forward to that moment! God bless you all!

  15. berto oseguera says:

    I am grateful to found this group. I lost my only son and child Andrew Alvaro Oseguera on 3/14/14 he died in his sleep, we still do not know why. I was arriving from Brazil and did not say goodbye. He was my pride and joy just 23 years old. I am lost in my mind full of fog and my heart is dead I do not know how to go forward. I pretend things are better but want God to take me too. It gives me some comfort knowing I am not alone as a father but have great sorrow we are all part of this group. I can truly say I feel your pain. God bless all of you.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Berto – I want to first start by saying how sorry I am for the loss of your son Andrew. I wish I could take a way the pain you carry, but its not possible. All I can do is be here for you in times you need other dads to help you along this path.

      Secondly, I want to apologize for taking so long to post your story. I was away on vacation for a couple of weeks.

      You use two words that stand out, “lost” and “fog”. There will be many times over the next several years where you will feel these emotions. Although the fog has lifted for me, there are still times I feel lost.

      I am glad you found this group and I hope you can find some support here amongst the other dads here.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  16. edcol52 says:

    Kelly-
    I too, am a grieving father. We lost our 24-year-old son, Jake December 28th, 2014. It was sudden, unexpected, and unnecessary. I have been writing about my journey along the road of grief on my blog, The Infinite Fountain, and found yours during my forays into the blogosphere. There are so few resources for fathers who have lost children, thank you for putting this one together. I am following Grieving Dads, have included a link to you on my page, and will send you my story soon for inclusion in your project. Wishing you peace.

  17. Dennis Harker says:

    My 28 year old son just died September 29th. After three days of hundred of people searching, he was found in the river. We think it is accidental, but it may not be. I am the third generation in a row who has lost a son. I don’t know how my parents and grandparents survived it.

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Dennis,

      I am sorry for the loss of you son. I wish I had words to erase the pain you feel inside, but with both know that isn’t possible. All I can say is I am glad you found us here. There are many grieving dads here that are on various points along this dark path that are willing to help/response to questions/support as you navigate through this new horrific journey you find yourself on. I also don’t know how others before me survived, but I can tell you that I am 9 years and 7 years out and I really don’t know how I survived those early dark days, but I have. You can survive this, but it takes a lot of hard work. I applaud you first step of reaching out and telling a little bit of your story here. I know those first few words are almost impossible to write without breaking down. But you will find, release the pain is part of the road to finding the new you.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  18. Nelson says:

    Hi everyone,

    My mother’s boyfriend of 5 years just lost his son Monday. Needless to say he is not doing very well at all. I would like to get him some help, but not sure if it is too soon, or even my place. But I feel called to help somehow and wondering if there are any types of retreats, cruise anything along those lines out there and if this is even a healthy approach.

    I am hitting google but nothing tangible yet, other than this great resource, so I thought I’d post here.

    I’ve been thinking that I would be willing to send him on some sort of retreat in Hawaii or some place like that for this kind of situation and wondering if this exists that anyone can recommend? Thanks in advance for any links or resources and I am sorry for your loss if you have or are going through this now.

    Nelson

  19. Hackie says:

    My wife and I recently lost our baby girl Maya on June 16th of this year. Maya only lived for 9 short hours. We don’t have any answers to why Maya died. All we know is that she couldn’t breathe on her own and she didn’t have a stable heartbeat 27 mins into her life here on earth. I struggle through my emotions everyday and I’m trying to find my new normal.

    I would like to express my deepest and most sincere condolences to everyone here who has lost a child. I have found that expressing my emotions through a blog has helped me cope. If you’d like to connect with me my blog is http://www.daddyofanangel.com. You can read Maya’s full story there.

    Thank you for this amazing site! I will visit often. It’s wonderful to know I’m not alone.

    -Hackie

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Hackie – You are welcome for the site, its been healing for me to be able to help the dads the are seeking others so they do not feel alone. I am sorry you find a reason to be here.

      I am sorry for the loss of your sweet little girl Maya. As you know this is a tough tough journey. Please know that we are here for you anytime you need us.

      You are not alone and yes, please stop by often.

      Peace.

      Kelly

    • Nelson says:

      Hi Hackie,

      I came on to leave a comment about my mother’s bf who just lost his 21 y/o son a couple of days ago and saw this and wanted to respond to you.

      My mom and dad had the exact same experience over 40 years ago before I came along. My sister lived for only 48hrs and was lost for the exact same reason and no explanation.

      My mom always told me that she only wanted one child and would not have had me had she survived. I don’t know what if anything this comment is supposed to do or my reason for responding and all of us are different. But, just know that I post this comment with all well intentions and hoping that somehow it is relevant and is of benefit.

      Nelson

  20. Wow! It is nice to see someone with the same passion as myself….I recently suffered a loss of my own and it led me on a campaign to bring healing into my own life by sharing my story with others who were going through the same things..I have workshops called After the Storm/Recovering from Persona Loss and Grief…Would be nice to learn more about what you do! Blessings!

  21. Dan Metcalf says:

    My 12-year-old son passed away after a 9 year battle with leukemia. I’m a heavy-haul trucker and as such am often away from home. Toward the end we were “lucky” that Matthew could travel with me and we could enjoy some togetherness time.

    Still, even after those trips together, I still found myself begging him not to go. He had such strong faith that he knew we would grieve when he was gone. He told me, “Daddy I don’t want you to suffer” and “I want you to have peace.” This from a child who had battled cancer and chemo for almost a decade!

    Through my grief I have to remember to believe as he did and believe that he is waiting in Jesus’ arms for me to join him someday.

    That, of course, can be little comfort on the days I miss him so much I hurt.

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Dan,

      Thank you for sharing your story. My dad was a long haul trucker and I rarely spent much time with him. I can tell you Matthew cherished the time he was able to spend with you on your trips.

      I am so sorry for your loss. Believe him when he told you he wants you to have peace. I will take time for the peace to come, but hang on to it. Reach out to others that are or have traveled this road. There is a brotherhood.

      Know he is waiting for you and how beautiful that day will be when you can hold him in your arms again. I know I can’t wait to see my two babies again. It will be an awesome day.

      I am here if you need me Dan.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  22. Josh says:

    Another stumbled upon story… trying to find out if the feelings I have are “normal” and here I am.

    My wife and I have an amazing busy busy busy baby boy who will turn 2 on 6-11-12. We wanted 2 children relatively close in age and became pregnant around thanksgiving last year. Fast forward to 20 weeks along, March 2012 and she didn’t feel “right”…. possible braxton hicks, possible labor so she went in. The news as you can guess wasn’t promising, rushed to L&D NICU where we heard many different things, we can try this, we might be able to do that, etc until somehow all options had been exhausted. We were the 1 in a million+. Reliving those events as I type…. devastating. We had to let labor take its course and have our baby @ 20 weeks, obviously no hope for sustained life. Absolute fu<k!ng devastation. Twelve hours later, my wife gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, Danylynn, she was born @ 0749 and passed 5 short, incredibly painful minutes later. We heard multiple reasons why, but as the weeks unfolded and test results came back we had no definitive answers, one of those cases that couldn't be explained. Seriously?!?!? I don't sleep much or well, have days that totally consume me with emotion, question everything that is supposed to "be"… how, why did this happen to us? I guess I'm just rambling about now. I haven't been able to shake the broken and wronged feelings, coupled with extreme sadness and extremely f'n angry . It is unfair, for me, for every other good person that this happens to. I am truly sorry for anyone that has experienced something similar. I am extremely thankful for my wonderful little boy, if it weren't for him, I may not be.

    I would say "god bless", but is there one? At this point it is hard to believe.

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Josh,

      Thank you for your posting. I want to start by saying “I am sorry for the death of your baby girl.” I know the pain you are experiencing all to well. I lost both of my children around the same preg time frame. Just reading your story brought me back to the delivery room and the time I spent with my son Noah.

      It is devastating and yes, what you are experiencing is a normal response to a not so normal situation. Everything you explain, I also felt. Lots of questions and emotions.

      I want to let you know that I am here for you and so are most of the people that visit this blog so please continue to visit the site or email/call me if you need to talk.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  23. Jason says:

    I too am a grieving father. I was married at 18 and a father by 20. My son passed away on August 29, 2009. He would have turned 19 two weeks to the day after his death. His mom and I are divorced and have a good relationship. She had another child but Zachary was my only child. I believe that people that do not know me think very little about this because I am/was a gay father. This is the closest site I have found that somewhat recognizes what I have lost…an incomplete future with no grandchildren. I can’t seem to move past this. I guess I never will.

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Jason,

      I am sorry for the death of your son Zachary. As you know, there are no words I can say that will erase the pain you carry.

      He is your son regardless, I am sorry your pain is discounted by others because you are gay. I don’t care what your background, beliefs, interests, etc are, you lost your son and it hurts. Thats all that matters. I think a lot of people discount mens grief in general because we are supposed to be the tough ones. The ones that are supposed to be the pillar of strength. Its not fair, but thats how society looks at it.

      My upcoming book discusses this issue. I am here for you Jason if you ever need to talk to another grieving dad. Please feel free to contribute to the discussions that occur here on the blog.

      Peace.

      Kelly

    • Kathy says:

      We’ll never move past it I think, it will just very slowly become easier, I HOPE. Lost my daughter 1-1/2 years ago and it still haunts me, I was told it takes 5 years, we’ll see. I’m a mom, but I also raised my kids by myself, so I proclaim myself to be a dad of sorts also. So, I hope I am welcome on this site, the sites for moms are just listening to women sob, I would like to be able to move on, so, I’m gonna hang with the dads here.

      • Anthony says:

        Kathy, I’m on year seven. It never goes away. It slowly becomes easier because we learn how to hide from the grief and pain for longer periods of time as time goes on. But that grief, that pain, it’s always there watching, waiting it doesn’t go away and you will still have to take a moment and let some of it out, but that weight will always be there for us to carry. It has taken me years to learn how to put on my public mask. But when I am home, that mask comes right off. I still have a hard time most nights, and I drink every night so that I can sleep. I hope that you are able to progress through your grief better than I have. Take care.

    • Anthony says:

      Jason, I am so very sorry for your loss. Nobody will ever know your grief but you, regardless of what they think. You are a Father. The most important job a human can ever be given. You are also a Father in grief, and other Father’s like me will always be here to support you. Even if you never do move past, where you feel stuck. Keep breathing, keep trying to do some good in this world and never, ever, give up on yourself.

  24. Thom says:

    Hi, Kelly.

    Thanks for creating such a powerful site. I found it today and it has been a cathartic discovery. I’m sitting at my desk while family and friends gather about 1,000 miles north to honor our son, Grant, who died suddenly at just six weeks old on Thanksgiving. It is heartwarming that those who couldn’t travel here for his memorial service are coming together to honor him and support my wife and me from afar.

    We adopted Grant, but he also had an “older sister” who was born through fertility treatments to us at 21 weeks. She survived just a little while outside the womb. And there was a miscarriage before that. I never could imagine that we’d have as much heartache compressed in just two years. It’s unfathomable. With Grant, we had found joy, but for far too short a time.

    Your Thanksgiving post was especially poignant. And despite life being pretty empty right now, I am thankful for all the people who love us and hold us so close.

    I’ll check back often… and pre-order that book, too.

    Thanks for such meaningful articulation.

    – Thom

  25. bobby smith says:

    i stumbled upon your website today as i was mornin the very recent loss of my 6 week old baby girl due to sids. as like in some of the stories i saw i was raised its not right for a man to cry ,toughen up, if its not broken or bleeding it doesn’t hurt. thats bogus im full of pain and hate at the moment lots of ppl think im coping but truth is i am hanging on by a thread and on the brink of a melt down. reading some of the stories here on your site has deff made some impact. and truth betold this is the second child me and my wife has lost our 2nd pregnancy was twins our girl made it with no complacations but her twin brother jayden william was still born and they still donot know hwy it happened. so before i go i would like to say jayden william and autumn rayne, daddy misses you both and will love you fore ever.

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Bobby – It is bogus and a wrong message to send. I see that now, but I too bought into that mentality. I now know I was wrong, but learning is a part of life. No matter how hard the lesson is.

      I am sorry for the loss of your baby boy Jayden. I wish there were words that I could say that would take away your pain, but there isn’t. But please know I am here, we are all here for you if you ever need to vent. Feel free to call me or email me as well if you need to speak to another grieving dad that gets your pain.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  26. Morgan says:

    Kelly-
    I stumbled across your website and am eternally grateful that I did. My husband and I lost our daughter Safia during pregnancy on July 27th, 2010. Passing the one year mark was harder than I imagined it would be, especially since we are pregnant again with a son. I think every day about my daughter and remember her as any parent would, regardless of the perceptions of others. My husband however suffers in silence. I can feel his pain radiating out when I bring up Safia, and I feel lost in trying to reach him. I will show him your site, and hope that it will somehow help ease his pain to see that other men feel as he does. Thank you so much for sharing your story and creating this wonderful place.
    Much Love –
    Morgan

    • Grieving Dads says:

      Morgan,

      I am glad you found this blog. I am sorry for the loss of your daughter Safia. Anniversaries and due dates are always difficult. I love the name Safia, beautiful. Thank you for sharing this blog with your husband. I hope he can find some sort of connection here with others. Please let him know that he can call or email me outside of this blog if he needs to speak with another dad that has also lost a baby during pregnancy. I get the pain he carries. It is always hard to see other dads holding the hand of their little girls that would be the same age as my Katie.

      Thank you for stopping by the blog.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  27. Jon says:

    Hi Kelly,
    I recently stumbled into your site and signed up for your emails. I just read yesterdays post and now I need to go back and read the rest of your posts, but this has been another very long day and I’m ‘exhausted’.
    First, please accept my sincere condolences on the loss of your children. No parent should ever have to bury a child, but to lose both your son and your daughter is beyond unimaginable. I do so hope that your Grieving Dads Project provides you with additional focus and strength. I applaud you for taking control and for helping others who have also suffered the loss of a child.
    I lost my son Paul, age 23, just four years ago. As a cancer survivor several years earlier, I thought I had already survived the worst life could toss at me. Little did I know that the cancer wasn’t even a speed bump relative to Paul’s death.
    Like you, I too had to do something or go insane. My projects were the establishment of two scholarship funds; building a website (www.paulfarris.org) honoring my son and as a place for his friends and family to ‘visit’ and remember Paul; and actively engaging in advocacy to save other innocent lives (www.PursuitSAFETY.org). So my projects give me focus but definitely leave me tired most of the time.
    I think that your taking extended time off work was a great idea. I did not, but in hindsight I should have done the same. My interest in work has never been lower, so I’m considering leaving my job very soon to take a 4-6 month sabbatical and travel with my spouse. I’ll use that time to figure out what I want to do in the future.
    Thanks for what you’re doing – it does make a difference. Wishing you moments of peace and strong, loving memories of Noah & Katie.
    Warmest regards,
    Jon

    • GrievingDads says:

      Jon,

      I want to start by saying how sorry I am for the loss of your son Paul. I know the pain you carry in your heart.

      The Grieving Dads Project has provided me with an extreme amount of healing, focus and strength. It helps me tremendously knowing that others are finding hope and support hear on this blog.

      I too applaud you for the work you are doing to honor your son Paul. I am sure you find a sense of healing by reaching out and helping others.

      I totally get your “low interest in your work”. If you can take the “time away” I highly recommend it. It allows time to self reflect on your personal life as well as reflecting on your son Paul. I am a big believer in redirecting your life and it has been shattered. It is not easy to do so I applaud you for even thinking about making these changes.

      Thanks for sharing here on this blog. Please stop back often.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  28. Gene Buck says:

    Thanks for the words to help my grieving and healing from the loss of our son, David, just 5 days before his 22nd birthday, after a more than two year battle with rhabdomyosarcoma cancer.

    • GrievingDads says:

      Gene,

      You are welcome. I am very sorry for the loss of your son David, I understand the pain you carry in you heart. Please know that this is a safe environment to express whats on you mind, what ever that is. I welcome full expression of thoughts and feelings here at this blog, its an important part of getting it out.

      Thanks for stopping by the Grieving Dads blog, stop back any time.

      Peace.

      Kelly

  29. My friend passed along your link. Glad to have found you.

  30. Gail says:

    Kelly,
    I am so sorry for the loss of your children.

    Thank you for your website and your project. I write in hopes that you will include the loss of very young aged children, those of “miscarriage” age in your project. Our daughter (as a mother I believe I know she is a girl) died a little over a year ago. We buried her 5 days after. We live a true grief struggle, our child is dead. But because of her age most of the world seems intent on complicating that by not even being able to acknowledge her as very real, much less any grief about losing her (-ie-there is something wrong with us if we do)-and we are forever devalued by comparisons of older age children, esp. those of late term/birth age as some form of “proof” that our loss isn’t worth much. Yet, I go through very much of what I read about the loss of older children. Last year was a blur, I (we)will never be that same, and I am having to work at a “new me”. If our grief were “allowed”, perhaps we would be closer to the magical better place other’s think we should be.

    My husband: Beloved Father of our child:
    Much confusion has been added to this journey for my husband because of what I have written above. I do believe much has been stymied. Her age alone was hard enough for him; trying to comprehend how he could grieve someone he didn’t get to hold or “bond” with. Profound agitation -yet flat out-extreme refusal of any acknowledgment on father’s day; because he “didn’t get to DO/BE enough Dad things for her, like the other Dads”. These are a few of the things that hurt him among a myriad of others. But it is hard to find a “safe” place to grieve or even find out about Dad’s grieving because of one so, so young. A prior search to find things for men and grief of their children only added to the pain, because it minimized or totally discluded “miscarriage” age -and I can’t describe our sensitivity and the ingrained filter we have acquired in our search for help that includes the age of our child instead of dismissing it. For me that has included support groups and a therapist on the NO list so far.

    Thank you so much for your time and care for grieving Dads,
    Gail

    • GrievingDads says:

      Gail,

      You have my word that I will include the loss of a child through miscarriage, stillbirth and prenatal decisions due to several fetal anomalies. I agree 100% that these parents are often overlooked as being “bereaved parents”. I know this because I lost my daughter Katie at 17 weeks pregnancy and my son Noah at 22 weeks pregnancy. We met many of my close friends through a support group sponsor by a local chapter of SHARE. They have all experienced the loss a child to still birth/miscarriage and the pain I see and hear from them is no different than the pain I hear from dads that lost an infant, toddler, teenager or grown child. It’s the same pain, grief, guilt and “what if’s” that all of us carry regardless of the circumstances surrounding our loss.

      I have interviewed dads from all walks of life (ethnicity, religious beliefs, socio-economic status, etc) and reasons for loss as a way to capture the truth about what dad’s experience after the loss of a child.

      I encourage your husband to acknowledge Father’s Day. Regardless of what others think, he is most definitely a daddy to that little girl.

      Thank you very much for writing and sharing your story. Please feel free to stop by here anytime to vent or encourage others.

      Peace.

      Kelly Farley

  31. Rick Belden says:

    Hello Kelly,
    I’ve been exploring your website and blog, and wanted to let you know that I admire and support the work you’re doing. As you know, there is a huge unmet need for it.

    I’ve just posted a couple of tweets pointing people to your site and blog. I hope you’ll have a few new visitors as a result.

    Best wishes for continued success with this project.

    Regards,
    Rick Belden

  32. My husband and I were talking about this very subject this afternoon – so after we got home from kayaking I simply googled grieving dads, and found you – we too are grieving parents. I write extensively about it, and have a blog as well. However, my husband felt that I needed to also incorporate a dad’s view of the struggle. My husband is a very quiet and intensely private man, but how he grieves.

    I will be following your project and blog, and have sent this link to several of the dad’s that I know that have lost their child.

    Warmest Regards,
    Lisa

    • GrievingDads says:

      Lisa,

      I am glad you Googled GrievingDads and I am glad you found me. I am so very sorry for your loss. Addressing the fathers point of view is very important on so many levels. Thank you for sharing this site with other dads. I hope they can find some sort of connection with the other dads that visit and share their stories/comments. It has become a place for men to not feel so alone in their journey. I am encouraged to continue bringing awareness to this issue.

      Peace. Kelly

  33. Keiko says:

    This is an incredible resource. Thank you for helping to lift some of the silence that surrounds the emotional health and wellbeing of men. Ditto to the above comment – I will be sharing this as a resource to my readers.

  34. JoAnne Funch says:

    I have added your site as a “resource” on my website. Thank you for speaking out, like you I founded Heartache To Healing when I felt there was a lack or true heartfelt support at the time of my losses…

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