health, life, mental health

My Grief Isn’t The Same As Yours

How experiencing childhood death changed me forever

Photo by Katya Wolf on

Many people have unfortunately had death visit their family or someone they know over the last few years. This includes children. Grief is different for everyone but none more-so than kids. I should know.

In 1997, my mom died. I think I was 9. At that age, you still have this innocence and naivety about the world. I never thought about death, which is funny because I think about it so much now. My mom’s death snatched any innocence and happiness I had.

The After-Effects Of Childhood Grief

My experiences in life have not been the greatest. The death of my mother was just the beginning of a series of bad events following each other. My therapist says I have PTSD because of it all. ( I just started seeing one)

Is there any surprise that I ended up with mental illness? It took me 35 years to admit my mental health issues and to finally get help, though I honestly don’t think it will help me much. That’s not to say therapy isn’t a great tool in the fight against mental illness. I’m sure it can do wonders for other people.

My thoughts are therapy just brings up all these emotions you regress, which you need to “process”. The damage I’ve acquired over the years is not a big mystery to me. I’ve been dealing with things for 35 years, so how many therapy sessions will it take before it’s all gets better?

Besides, I think about things often. My mother’s death, my father’s death, molestation, abandonment, my race. It’s all a confusing swirl that sometimes hits me so hard all I can do is cry. My true therapy lies in writing and music. It always has.

The catalyst for what I’ve become stems from childhood death. There is no amount of therapy I ever needed to tell me that. Now, I’m left in a constant state of reliving painful memories and dream of things that could have been.

It took me too long to learn to value myself, adding a bunch of tally marks on my headboard I surely never wanted.

It made death a curious nick I can’t heal, some days obsessing over what will happen when I die.

I always second guess myself.

I chased sex and drugs to fill the void of my parent’s death.

I could go on and on. That one defining tragedy in my life made me, better or worse, who I am today. Death as a child makes you mature in a way that only life experience can give. Sometimes, many times, many days, I wish life would have dished out a different circumstance.

Though, all you can do is live, right? I strive to fight another day, no matter how hard so history doesn’t repeat itself for my children. I hope I’m allotted an old life for their sake.

Originally published at

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