Our children grow, they leave the nest, they move into independent lives… just as we did… and just as their children will… it’s the way of things. It’s sad to see our little ones leave, but then it’s good to have our big ones here.
Finding life’s rhythms is helpful.
The treatment for traumatic grief is to restore the attachment bond. Are you dead? No. Is the child dead? No. Then the treatment for traumatic grief is to restore the attachment bond… as fast as we possibly can.
It’s not good to leave an un-repaired breach to the parent-child bond, that is the WORST possible thing we can do.
You use several terms that would require more precise definition for a precise answer:
Post-traumatic. Our goal is not to help a person cope with ongoing abuse and trauma, it is to end the ongoing abuse and trauma. So then, is your question about recovering a healtthy life for the parent once the child’s bond to the parent has been recovered and restored?
Or are you believing that your bond to your child will not be recovered, and you are asking how to attain a healthy life if your child does not return to the bond?
Post-traumatic with recovery? Or without recovery?
With recovery, good. Without recovery, different but still good… sort of. You are more than a “parent.”
Growth. Growth means you are changing. What is the possibility of you changing? Pretty good, I’d say. Sadness gives us roots, it gives us depth. Lots of growth in sadness. We could do with a little less growth over here, and more consolidation of growth in love and bonding.
Growth or recovery? Growth, always. Parent’s recovery… with the child back or without the child back? With the child back, good. Without the child back, good, but different – hard. The sadness is so great, the grief so large. It takes a fair degree of love and nurture to process that amount of sad.
That’s why it’s called “traumatic” grief – it’s traumatic. Complex trauma; traumatic grief.
The treatment for traumatic grief is to restore the attachment bond as fast as we possibly can.
Craig Childress, Psy.D.
Clinical Psychologist, PSY 18857