Author Topic: Suicide - telling the kids  (Read 1271 times)

Portside

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Suicide - telling the kids
« on: May 19, 2016, 01:22:24 PM »
April posted this in another post and I felt this could be a great topic on it's own:

"I wasn't even going to tell my children how he died.. but the therapist said I needed to.. they needed to hear it from me not through the grapevine."



I was forced into telling the boys. Even though my youngest found my wife's body, he had no idea what had truly happened. I had shoo'd them out of the house and while we were all in the front yard the police and EMTs arrived. The boys were inconsolable but J. choked out "Why would someone kill Mom? I was a mess myself and I could only tell them "That's not what happened."

It would be a few days later, after they had badgered me, that I told them the truth.

While very hard, for my kids at least, it was best for me to give them the news. I was suddenly their everything and they didn't trust anyone else for anything at all.

With all the events surrounding T.'s death, dealing with kids and how it all affected them was the worst. Ugh.

My poor little guys.  :'(

Mike
The war is over for me now. But those of us who did make it have an obligation to build again, to teach to others what we know, and to try with what's left of our lives to find a goodness and a meaning to this life.

April

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Re: Suicide - telling the kids
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2016, 01:41:31 PM »
I was lucky that I nor the kids found my husband.. a friend did in the middle of the night.. in our detached garage.. they wouldn't let me see him.. part of me is grateful I didn't see him.. I didn't want that image burned into my head.. I sat up all night wondering what to tell them.. I contemplated sending them to school that day.. I thought maybe I could buy myself more time to prepare myself on what I should say.. this was going to crush them.. I most certainly was not thinking rationally at all.. it's something I was fearing for a long time but never really prepared myself for.. I of course did not send them to school that day.. I told them Daddy passed away .. but I didn't say what from.. I am the worlds most terrible liar so saying "we don't know yet" was my only option (because technically we didn't know exactly).. they were upset.. and oddly asked if they could go play outside.. I was taken back by their reaction.. but the therapist said kids process things differently then we do.

avoiding his cause of death was my only option.. I was going to try and avoid the truth forever if it was possible.. but at least until I felt it was safe to tell them.. when they were stable.. and out of the fragile confusing teen years.

I realize now that the kids needed to know how he passed.. my oldest son knew.. my three younger ones didn't.. some of their cousins knew.. our small town knew.. I knew I was sitting on a time bomb.. it was only a matter of time before someone slipped in front of them.. I just didn't know how to tell them.. I didn't want them to think he abandoned them.. I didn't want them to blame themselves... I didn't want them to think they could do the same so they could be with him.. I didn't want to hurt them even more..  But what I didn't realize is that not knowing how he passed was hurting them.. it was eating my son up.. he said he constantly thought about how he died.. imagining horrible scenarios.. so it was several months after he passed that I finally told them.. the therapist gave me some pointers on how to bring it up and get the conversation started.. so.. one at a time I sat them down on my bed.. Indian style face to face and I held their hands.. and asked them how they thought Daddy died.. they both said his heart.. I brought them both in together to explain (my middle two.. my youngest wasn't even 3 yet.. so I don't think she was aware of anything).. and I just took it from there.. lots of tears and questions.. uncomfortable questions.. they wanted to know how he did it and I didn't know if that was appropriate to explain.. the therapist told me I probably shouldn't explain how.. but they were imagining blood and gore.. and the truth was a lot less ugly as what their minds were imagining.. so I did wind up telling them how.. it was a lot more peaceful then what they were thinking.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2016, 01:51:15 PM by April »

April

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Re: Suicide - telling the kids
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2016, 01:56:46 PM »
Portside.. I'm sorry your boy found your wife.. how traumatic for a young child.

And I agree.. my heart broke more for my children then for myself.. worst part of this whole mess.. for me anyway.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2016, 01:59:06 PM by April »

keeptrying

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Re: Suicide - telling the kids
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2016, 08:30:58 PM »
Unfortunately, my uncle has a big mouth. I asked him not to tell my children. I wanted to be the one, but as soon as we walked in the door after finding out about my husbands death, he told my son. The police told my daughter. My younger 5 I have not told, and I will not tell them. I made this rambling story up about how he had health/something wrong with his brain.  - I still can't wrap my head around it.  I haven't processed it, and I am sure not going to have my kids have to deal with it now. Maybe one day when they get much much older. For now, I don't see how it will benefit them. I think it would do the opposite

April

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Re: Suicide - telling the kids
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2016, 09:25:01 PM »
You know what is best for your family and your situation.. my oldest son is friends with a boy his age (18).. his father committed suicide too when he was 9 yrs old.. he said his Mom just told him the truth about how his father died... he said was glad his mother waited to tell him.  Holding off worked for them.. I chose to tell them because everyone else knew except them.. You will know when the time is right.