You Don’t Have to Pretend

It’s OK to not be OK.

If you are grieving, you are not responsible for making others feel better about YOUR pain.

You have suffered a great wound and you carry a heavy load.

heal and acknowledge


You are allowed to express sorrow and longing.  It’s what people do.

It’s what we have to do if we are going to make it through this dark valley.

Find a safe person and let. it. out.


Bottling it up inside only drags me deeper under the waves.  Hiding my tears doesn’t save me from sorrow, it only makes me ashamed and anxious.

ann voskamp love will always cost you grief


And there is nothing shameful in grieving my missing child.

Great grief is the price I pay for great love.


I’m not advocating pitching a fit in public.

It’s good to be sensitive to other people, and I want to extend the same courtesy and kindness to others I would like to have extended to me.

BUTwhen sorrow rolls over me like a tidal wave, I do not have to hide to preserve the comfort of others.

And I won’t.





Author: Melanie

I am a shepherd, wife and mother of four amazing children, three that walk the earth with me and one who lives with Jesus. This is a record of my grief journey and a look into the life I didn't choose. If you are interested in joining a community of bereaved parents leaning on the promises of God in Christ, please like the public Facebook page, "Heartache and Hope: Life After Losing a Child" and join the conversation.

5 thoughts on “You Don’t Have to Pretend”

  1. We are about to face our 1 year anniversary of the loss of our son Steven. He passed on July 8. I am so dreading that day. I don’t know if people think I should act a certain way or I think I should. We miss him so much. Thank you again for your words! 💜


  2. I am a nurturer; I discovered this (even though I had been living it in my life and in my walk with God) the day I knew I was pregnant. Without her, I have to nurture people from a distance. I am also a mystic; this sounds “unbalanced” but I am not mentally ill. This combination makes me need to help when I often cannot. It also makes it difficult for me to share my personal great sorrow; it is as if I have no right to disrupt the inner lives of others. Plus, aside from my therapist, my Priest and a few FB friends who share the same sort of grief, no one wants to hear it. People are uncomfortable when I talk about my daughter. This is a rebuke to me but there seems no way to overcome it. This world is not a “safe” or “beautiful” place; it is filled with struggle, fear, injury, death, that is its reality. The tidal wave of grief is a daily occurrence, even after five years, and it always will be. I will not deny my daughter’s life, not in this world, and not in the next (where I have seen her). And so I am living in virtual solitary confinement where my social interactions are limited (outside of FB where all of my friends share this same experience) to very superficial expressions. This is a very heavy cross.


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