Advertising
Advertising

Things That People Who’ve Lost Their Parents Really Want You To Know

Things That People Who’ve Lost Their Parents Really Want You To Know

Death is never a gentleman. He is always terse and strident. That is why losing a loved one is never easy, especially your parents. I remember when my mom passed. It was horrible. My father had passed 8 years earlier and that was difficult enough. When my mom passed just under a decade later, I went numb. Several years have put space between me and their deaths. Things are definitely easier now. Time is one of the best baby step inventions ever created.

I still wish other people could understand, though. I’m sure you do too. For those of us who have lost our parents, conversations can be difficult. Friends and existing family members may wonder why we disconnect at times. They may be uncomfortable with our periodic emotional breakdowns. If you have lost someone close, you know exactly what I am talking about. To that end, take a look at the items below, inspired by The Odyssey Online. They will help navigate conversation when needed. The following is a list of things we wish everyone knew about those of us who have lost our parents.

Advertising

Memorabilia Takes On New Meaning

photography-569354_1920

    All those old pictures and videos are priceless to us. Any personal items they had that might be tucked away in storage are guarded like treasure. You might wonder why we get nervous when you hold dad’s old handkerchief or mom’s favorite cookbook. It’s because those things are all we have left. They are more than “stuff.” They are physical representations of shared experiences we had with them.

    Advertising

    Holidays Are Painful

    rainy-83136_1280

      This is one of those times when emotions are swirling. Friends and family gather from far and near. There is much laughter as we reminisce about the good times. Yet we might break down at some point and need a hug because we realize there will never be anymore of those moments shared with our parents.

      Advertising

      We Are Jealous Of You

      We remember what it was like to have both of our parents here. Hearing you speak poorly of one or praise another will stir resentment in us. It may not even take that. Sometimes, all it takes is a mere mention of your mother or father and our eyes get red and teary.

      Your “Sorry” Lacks Meaning For Us

      That might seem harsh, but it’s true. We hear the word “sorry” all the time. We know you mean well, but you are not as familiar with our story. It seems like just another word people say because society mandates this as proper behavior. We hear you, but the sentiment is hollow. Follow up with a hug and more conversation.

      Advertising

      We Think About Them A Lot

      sadness-717439_1920

        Whenever we reach a milestone, we wonder how they would feel. If we graduate, are they proud? If we get married, do they approve? Would they take this business deal or auto loan, etc.? We wonder a million times every day what they think about what we are doing. We don’t want to let them down.

        We Love Old Stories

        We never get tired of hearing old stories about our parents from aunts, uncles, other relatives, and friends still living. We will always take the time to listen to them and laugh. These are glimpses into their world that we might not otherwise have known about. It’s like stealing a memory and making it our own. So keep this in mind the next time we seem distant. Remember this when we are breaking down emotionally at a family gathering. We still want to talk. We still want to laugh. You are very much a part of our life and we love you dearly. We just miss our parents — a lot.

        Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

        More by this author

        Who’s at the Wheel? Technology Causing Distracted Driving and Other Stories of Multi-Tasking Is Your Website Costing You Sales? Staying Afloat: Why Kids Should Learn to Swim If You’re a Burned Out Entrepreneur There’s a Solution Common Signs and Symptoms of Depression in Parents

        Trending in Communication

        1 12 Simple Ways You Can Build A Positive Attitude 2 How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up 3 Feeling Stuck in Life? How to Never Get Stuck Again 4 3 Ways to Reprogram Your Subconscious Mind to Reach Your Goals 5 Practical Advice for Overcoming Problems in INFP Relationships

        Read Next

        Advertising
        Advertising

        Last Updated on December 16, 2018

        12 Simple Ways You Can Build A Positive Attitude

        12 Simple Ways You Can Build A Positive Attitude

        We all look for a better and happier life, but somehow we realize it’s our attitude that makes it hard to lead the life we want. How can we build a positive attitude? Grant Mathews has listed out the things (from the easiest to the hardest) we can do to cultivate this attitude on Quora:

        1. Listen to good music.

        Music definitely improves your mood, and it’s a really simple thing to do.

        2. Don’t watch television passively.

        Studies have shown that people who watch TV less are happier, which leads me to my next point…

        3. Don’t do anything passively.

        Whenever I do something, I like to ask myself if, at the end of the day, I would be content saying that I had spent time doing it. (This is why I block sites I find myself wasting too much time on. I enjoy them, but they’re just not worth it when I could be learning something new, or working on projects I care about.)

        Time is incredibly valuable.

        Advertising

        4. Be aware of negativity

        A community that considers itself intelligent tends to be negativity because criticizing is seen as a signaling mechanism to indicate that you’re more intelligent than the person you corrected. This was irrationally frustrating for me – it’s one of those things you’ll stay up all night to think about.

        5. Make time to be alone.

        I initially said “take time just to be alone.” I changed it because if you don’t ensure you can take a break, you’ll surely be interrupted.

        Being with other people is something you can do to make you happy, but I don’t include it in this list because nearly everyone finds time to talk with friends. On the other hand, spending time just with yourself is almost considered a taboo.

        Take some time to figure out who you are.

        6. Exercise.

        This is the best way to improve your immediate happiness.

        Advertising

        Exercise probably makes you happy. Try and go on a run. You’ll hate yourself while doing it, but the gratification that you get towards the end vastly outweighs the frustration of the first few attempts. I can’t say enough good things about exercise.

        Exercising is also fantastic because it gives you time alone.

        7. Have projects.

        Having a goal, and moving towards it, is a key to happiness.

        You have to realize though that achieving the goal is not necessarily what makes you happy – it’s the process. When I write music, I write it because writing is inherently enjoyable, not because I want to get popular (as if!).

        8. Take time to do the things you enjoy.

        That’s very general, so let me give you a good example.

        Advertising

        One of the things that has really changed my life was finding small communities centered around activities I enjoy. For instance, I like writing music, so I’m part of a community that meets up to write a song for an hour every week. I love the community. I’ve also written a song every week, 37 weeks in a row, which has gradually moved me towards larger goals and makes me feel very satisfied.

        9. Change your definition of happiness.

        Another reason I think I’m more happy than other people is because my definition of happiness is a lot more relaxed than most people’s. I don’t seek for some sort of constant euphoria; I don’t think it’s possible to live like that. My happiness is closer to stability.

        10. Ignore things that don’t make you happy.

        I get varying reactions to this one.

        The argument goes “if something is making you unhappy, then you should find out why and improve it, not ignore it.” If you can do that, great. But on the other hand, there’s no reason to mope about a bad score on a test.

        There’s another counterargument: perhaps you’re moping because your brain is trying to work out how to improve. In fact, this is the key purpose of depression: Depression’s Upside – NYTimes.com

        Advertising

        I can think of examples that go both ways. I remember, for instance, when I was debating a year or two ago and my partner and I would lose a round, I would mull over what we had done wrong for a long time. In that way, I got immensely better at debate (and public speaking in general – did you know debate has amazing effects on your public speaking ability? But now I really digress).

        On the other hand, there’s no way that mulling over how dumb you were for missing that +x term on the left hand side will make you better at math. So stop worrying about it, and go practice math instead.

        11. Find a way to measure your progress, and then measure it.

        Video games are addictive for a reason: filling up an experience bar and making it to the next level is immensely satisfying. I think that it would be really cool if we could apply this concept to the real world.

        I put this near the bottom of the list because, unfortunately, this hasn’t been done too often in the real world – startup idea, anyone? So you would have to do it yourself, which is difficult when you don’t even know how much you’ve progressed.

        For a while, I kept a log of the runs I had taken, and my average speed. It was really cool to see my improvement over the weeks. (Also, I was exercising. Combining the two was fantastic for boosting happiness.)

        12. Realize that happiness is an evolutionary reward, not an objective truth.

        It’s easy to see that this is correct, but this is at the bottom of the list for a reason.

        Read Next