"Crazy Like a (Perfectly Normal) Bereaved Parent"

by Kathy on January 10, 2012 · 3 comments

in Bereavement, Coping, Grief, Loss, Molly, Pain, Social Media

I have read a lot of commentary about what happened last week when Fox News contributor Alan Colmes attacked Republican Party primary Presidential candidate Rick Santorum and his wife Karen for the “crazy” way they dealt with the death of their son soon after his birth in 1996. Political views and party affiliations aside, I believe what Mr. Colmes did was out of line on so many levels and felt sick as I learned about the incident.

I have been wanting to write and share something about it here, but after reading what Amy Kuebelbeck wrote, as a guest post on Debbie Davis’s Psychology Today blog Laugh, Cry, Live, I couldn’t begin to address this topic as well as she has. I am grateful that Amy was able to give an informed and inspired voice to what many bereaved parents (like me) have been thinking and feeling this week after following this story.

I encourage you to read Amy Kuebelbeck’s article with this awesome title:

Crazy like a (Perfectly Normal) Bereaved Parent: In Defense Rick and Karen Santorum 

Please also consider sharing the link with anyone who you know who might appreciate it.

It’s painful to witness these situations when they hit the mainstream news media and more often when we experience them on a smaller scale with various people we know in our personal lives, especially as parents who have lost children. But these events can also be opportunities to raise awareness, build bridges and further understanding about what is truly “normal” for parents who are grieving the loss of a baby that has left this world too soon.

We all need to do what works for us to survive the death of our loved ones and try our best to respect that not everyone grieves, copes and heals in the same way. Different does not equal crazy and I raise my glass to Amy Kuebelbeck for making that case so well in her blog post today.

Thank you for reading, as well as for the support and validation many of you have shown my family and me over the years for how we have chosen to deal with our grief after the birth and death of our daughter Molly in April 2008.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Deborah January 11, 2012 at 7:00 am

Thank you so much for sharing this article. Personally, I am pro-choice, and I think the Santorums' situation is a perfect example of why late-term abortion should remain a choice for some families. However, it is such a personal, sensitive subject, and I don't believe anybody has the right to judge the Santorums for the way they handled their own son's complications. Some things should just be off limits.

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2 Bella Michelle January 13, 2012 at 8:45 am

Thank you for sharing the "other side" of this painful subject. No one knows how they will feel until they are in the middle of such pain.

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3 loribeth January 17, 2012 at 8:09 pm

I read that article, & thought it was marvellous. Thanks for sharing it with a broader audience!

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