If things go wrong: to parents

iStock_72530273_XXXLARGEFamilies together

The sudden death of a child is devastating—even more so when he/she left home on hope and a promise, and instead dies a sudden, violent death far far away.

For a long while, you may feel profoundly alone.

When bereaved families meet one another, there’s often astonishment. We quickly recognize similarities in our children’s stories, as well as the congruent scars left by their deaths.

What can we do together?

First, we can meet, whether via email, telephone, or in person. We are less alone and stronger together.

The second thing we can do is to acknowledge the deep pain and profound wisdom we carry. When our child died, a part of us died, too. What remains of us is partly broken and partly new. Daily survival is an act of courage, which we honor in one another.

To join efforts—when we can—can be empowering. The Internet serves as a landscape to connect. To build our community does not require fundraising. It does require compassion and a common will that student safety become top priority.