Rahul’s dad was always found smiling, radiant, full of life. But something terrible happened, taking Rahul’s dad’s smile away from him. The smile found permanently perched on his dad’s face is missing since many days.
Rahul lost his mother a month back and his father is going through a very tough time dealing with her death. Rahul’s dad doesn’t talk much and come out of his room. He prefers to be alone and doesn’t talk much with the other family members. Rahul’s father is depressed over the loss of his wife. Losing a loved one is very painful and the fact that the person is not going to be with you is the most hard fact to believe and live with. Life without your wife or husband is hard to live. They depend on each other for the care, love and most importantly the support they give to each other throughout life. Suddenly losing that person is bound to make your father’s or mother’s quite life difficult to live. Since the situation cannot be changed, life has to move.
At such times, you have to be supportive of them and help them to live life with more meaning rather than being depressed.
Anybody could be in Rahul’s situation tomorrow and the only difference they could bring, would be by, being fully supportive of their grieving parent. Listed below are the things which can help your parents cope with the loss of a spouse:
Your parent has just lost their life partner and you have to understand that, moving on with life is going to take time. Your parent may not be comfortable talking with others, going out or sharing things with you for first few days. This is very natural and hence don’t feel that they are hiding their feeling from you. At such times, letting your parent be is the best thing to do. With the passage of time, they are going to be alright and come back to normal. Give them their time and they will be fine once again.
Losing a spouse affects your parent not only on the emotional front but also physically. They are bound to show less interest in food and will eat less or avoid eating. Do not let this happen with your parent because not eating will make them weak and can also impact their health. Make sure they eat properly meals (you can also cook food for your parent’s choice). This will not only make them feel good but also help them have a proper meal.
Along with their physical health, your parent’s emotional and mental health also needs attention. After a few days, talk to them about their feelings and help them to relax. Make sure they don’t cry too much and get good sleep. Also when they feel like talking to you, make it a point that you assign time for them and help them to share what they want to.
It is very common if your parent is not agreeing to what you say or doing what you want him to do. He is bound to be unhappy for few months; lose temper, get frustrated and show behavioral changes. But remember to take all these with positive attitude as this behavior is not intentional. It is you, who has to understand and be with them.
Your parent is going to feel lonely; they will remember their spouse every and will also miss them. Sometimes it becomes hard on them to cope easily after their spouse’s death, at such time you can be their best help. The best way to keep them away from the loneliness is by keeping them engaged.
Engage them as much as you can, ask your parent to read stories and play board games with your kid. Give them good books to read which will help them pass time. You can also give them good movies to watch which will make them feel better. If your parent is retired, then ask him whether he wants to join any volunteering services to any organization. Engaging them in different activities will not only help them cope but will reduce their chances of being depressed and staying alone.
It is not only your father or mother, who have lost a spouse but even you has lost a parent. Even you are in pain as your parent is, but it is you who have to instill confidence in him and support them. Let your parent know how you still see them as great inspiration in your life. You have to reassure your parent that he or she has much more to see in life, instilling confidence will not only make them think positively but also help them move ahead with life.
It is you who has to take charge, to make a difference in your parent’s life, so don’t let go off your responsibility and make the change!