Men Hurt Too

When a child dies much of the emphasis and support is given to the mother, which they are wholly entitled to, leaving the father on the ‘back burner’. No one sets out for this to be deliberate or that dads do not need any support or consideration, it’s often just the way it is. Whilst there are  subtle reminders in poems such as ‘ A dad hurts too’ fathers are grieving just as much as mothers are, but not the same. For many reasons such as: stereotyping, that a man has to be strong, that he has to support his family or does not want to share how he feels for fear of critism, men often bottle up how they are feeling; but are really crying out inside.

Keep these in mind when a man you know is grieving:

•Our culture discourages men from expressing how they feel.

•At the same time men have been judged for not saying how they feel and therefore may find themselves in a quandary.

•A man has physical differences which can impact his way of healing.

•A man’s way of healing may be less visible and more subtle.

•A man’s grief is often connected more with the future than with the past.

•Just because a man is more silent does not mean he isn’t grieving.

•Every man is unique in the way he approaches his own healing.

•A man’s healing can be influenced by his tendency toward independence.

•Men may prefer time alone in order to heal.

•Men may respond to their loss more cognitively.

•A man is likely to find ways to connect with the pain he feels with an action he can take. Keep these in mind when you as a man consider your own grieving process:

•You will grieve in your own way, influenced by who you are, how you’re made, what you’ve experienced, and how you’ve been raised.

•You may use fewer words than those around you.

•You will be inclined to use your strength to connect with and heal your pain.

•You may choose to tap into your grief by taking action more than through interaction.

•You may place value on independence, quiet, and solitude as you grieve.

•You’re likely to find meaning in caring for those around you as one aspect of your grieving process.

•You may wish to honour your loss through action that impacts the future more than talking about the past.

•You can use your courage to stand in the tens