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Losing a Close Relative

by Sam P. | November 14th, 2014 | Teen Perspective, Teens

sad teen (400x400)The sad fact is that by the time we are sixteen the majority of kids have lost a close loved one, whether it be an aunt, uncle, grandparent, or even a parent.  When a situation like this occurs, people expect you to cry, or to lash out, but people forget that everyone grieves differently.  At the end of this summer I lost my aunt.  She would’ve been forty in October.  When my parents told me it was like it wasn’t real.  My stepmom was expecting me to cry, but I couldn’t.  I didn’t until I saw my grandmother.  It didn’t really hit me until weeks later while I was in school, and I still show up at my grandmother’s house expecting for my aunt to come rolling out in her chair with her cat in her lap and her beautiful face shining up at me.

I didn’t cry much at all throughout everything that happened, between the funeral and the wake I hardly cried at all.  The whole time my stepmother wouldn’t stop rubbing my back expecting me to break out in tears at any second, but I never did.  Losing someone that close to you is a very confusing process and someone as young as I am shouldn’t have to know how to handle a situation like that.

People forget that everyone grieves differently, and everyone pines for their lost loved one in different ways.  Some people do take the usual path of crying, or lashing out, or becoming depressed, but I don’t see this as the “typical” way to grieve because there shouldn’t be a standard way for a person to grieve.  The thing that made me the most upset at my aunt’s funeral was not the funeral itself; it was quite large and lovely and I am sure she would’ve loved it, but how clingy people became to me.  My stepmom hardly left my side once as if she thought if she did, I would become this lost puppy who had no idea what to do with herself anymore.  Now some people may do that and may want as many hugs as they can get and they may need to carry a tissue box around with them, but other people don’t.  Many people, in fact, need quite the opposite.  They want to be alone so they can process what it was that has just happened to them.

Comforting a grieving person is hard enough as it is, but comforting a grieving teenager who has never experienced this in their life is probably one of the most difficult tasks a person can take on.  The biggest piece of advice I can give you is to give them space.  If they need a shoulder to cry on or someone to hug they will come and find you or someone else who can help them.  Chances are by smothering them you will just cause them to be more confused than they already are.

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