I wrote this letter for parents of sons who are experience the sorrow of losing a friend. I heard of another young man who passed today, and this is a difficult topic to discuss with our children. Please let me know if I can pray for you or your loved ones.
Life is full of twists and turns. Chock full. Some of those twists and turns surprise you joyfully and others take you by surprise.
As I watched you say goodbye to your very best friend today, I knew it had to be one of the most difficult days of your life. Actually, I thought the funeral would be cathartic, but you held strong and tough.
When you were growing up and you’d fall and skin your knee, I’d grab a wet cloth and respond, “You’re okay, you’re okay.” Being future oriented, I didn’t want to create a wimpy boy – one who cried over every bump or bruise.
Mission accomplished. What I saw today was a young man, who buried his best friend and shed not a tear. Perhaps I stifled your emotions. I realized that one day when you were little and we were playing basketball and I fell and skinned my knee. OUCH! That puppy stung. And then stung some more!!! I couldn’t believe I had told you to “shake it off” when the pain was so intense.
I am sorry!
Pain is pain. And some pain is appropriate to give in to. Losing a friend is one of those types of pain. The loss of a confidante and companion is brutal. It creates a void that can’t be denied. In fact, as friends, I’m sure you had many dreams that you talked about over the years. Dreams that included growing up together, or never growing up! Ha. I know how guys are!!
But seriously, when dreams die – it’s very hard to know what to do with the disappointment. The loneliness. The sorrow.
And when you’ve been told as a boy, and now, a young man – to suck it up and not give in to your emotions – that’s horrible advice today. Don’t get me wrong – I understand that you didn’t want to lose your composure in front of everyone. But what I am encouraging you to do is to walk through your pain.
Often guys grieve deeply and silently. I encourage you to cry out to the Lord. Let Him walk you through this. If you can, journal to the Lord your feelings, thoughts, and questions. Then throw the paper away if you want. But get your feelings out. This will be a journey. A difficult journey. And there are different stages of mourning the loss of someone we love. Typically,
The Stages of Grief are:
I won’t turn this into a lecture – but please take some time to look up the stages of grief. It’s a process that takes time. And it’s strange that there are stages that can be predicted but it’s true.
Be encouraged, there is no right or wrong way to progress through grief – everyone walks through it differently. Just please…allow yourself to go through it. You need to, so that it doesn’t creep up and consume you. Being a man, you probably want to think you’ve “got this.” But grief will hit you sideways and shows up as anger, impatience, or crazy thinking.
You are a strong young man and I’d encourage you to give yourself time and permission to grieve. It will take time to learn how to deal with missing someone you love. Be patient with yourself.
God is a very present help in your time of need (Psalm 46:1-2). Remember he is sensitive to all your concerns and he cares very deeply for you. Our hope should be in the one who offers hope -in Christ – he will never leave you alone (Hebrews 31:6).
I’m always here for you too.
If you’d like to link up your articles please join us in for TrekkingThru the Week linkup party. Be sure to mingle and get to know the others in the party! I’m amazed that we can make friends through this machine!! What a delight! If you have a linkup party be sure it’s listed here: Linkup Parties
If you like what you’ve read please subscribe and receive a free printable that helps you make small changes for a LARGE impact on your life.
I’d love to get to know you and stay in touch!