How to answer people when they ask how many children and one is in heaven?

Bonnie - posted on 11/20/2014 ( 3 moms have responded )




This comes up often and when answered with the facts: Two sons, one is nineteen months and one will always be four and a half or two sons, one here with us and one in Heaven, there's awkwardness beyond measure. Ideas?


Guest - posted on 11/21/2014




If you want to acknowledge your older son, and don't mind talking about him, I think that your answer is perfect. There will always be an awkwardness after you answer that way because the person you are talking to probably has never experienced that kind of pain, and they don't know what to say. They are afraid that whatever they say might hurt your feelings or cause you pain because they cannot know where you are in your grieving process without a lot more information. Everyone grieves differently, and words that comfort some hurt others. No one wants to hurt your feelings knowing how much you've already hurt, so they sort of panic a little bit.

During the awkward moment, you should probably speak so they don't have to.

If you only want to acknowledge your older son, but not talk about him in depth, you can keep the focus on your youngest son. Swap the order, then immediately go into something your youngest is doing now, "I have two, my oldest will always be 4 and a half, and my youngest is 19 months now and growing so fast!" There you can add his latest milestone or accomplishment, or whatever parenting issue you are struggling with, like "He is running so fast now I can barely keep up with him!" or "I can't believe how crazy his temper has gotten in the past month!" This gives them an opening to talk about something they know won't cause you emotional pain. They won't forget that you mentioned the older son, but they will be less pressured to figure out what to say about the son in Heaven, less afraid their words will hurt your feelings on accident, and all around more comfortable.


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Gena - posted on 11/21/2014




My situation is abit different because i lost my sister when she was ten,and i have another sister. When people ask me do you have brothers and sisters i answer, i have two younger sisters,the youngest passed away. Because my youngest sister is and always will be my sister and a part of my life,eventhough she is not alive anymore.And my mom always tells people she has three daughters,depending on who is asking she will explain that the youngest past away.

Sarah - posted on 11/20/2014




I lost twin girls due to a premature birth,so my situation is different. I always say the number of living children, 4. For me to bring it up and then explain why the girls are gone is just too painful for me.
I think you can say I have one son that is 19 months now I had a son that passed away at 4 in 20__. Just be prepared for the questions, if you open the door, people want to know the details

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