Grief That Can Be Ugly

Image may contain: flower and text (by Narin Grewal, used with permission…please visit her site for more beautiful ‘memes/graphics’)

When I began on Grief Sites sixteen months ago, I truly believed I was entering a community of broken vessels much like myself. I had no expectations; I did believe all were struggling like myself and had soft broken hearts. What I did not expect is meeting up with some that have hearts harder than stone. One of the very first articles I ever wrote and later published in my book is the one in which I compared King David and Pharaoh. Both had sons that died, in fact, David buried two. The difference in their reaction and behaviour that followed their tragedies is as different as night and day.

King David never became bitter. He cried out to God and grieved with heartfelt cries and pleas, but he never blamed God nor became mean-spirited in response. Pharaoh, on the other hand, became mean and spiteful as he pursued God’s people to kill them all. He wanted vengeance, and his heart was overflowing with hatred. Both men were Dads, both buried children, both chose their reaction and response to their Grief. Truly, as Narin so grandly stated above: “Grief doesn’t change you…it reveals you”.

This is quite different from the many posts we often find that tell grievers they are forever changed by their tragedy. It is of my opinion, that Narin’s statement is much more honest and to the point. It’s not that we have ‘changed’, it is that Grief has brought to the surface things which already existed within. Another Momma told me a few months ago that if a person was a mean person before they buried their child, they may very well still be a mean person afterward. It truly boggled my mind when she told me that. I could not fathom how a person who has lost their greatest treasure could not be changed to a softer and more compassionate person as a result. It is still very difficult for me to comprehend all of this.

When my ex-husband’s second wife died, I felt absolutely nothing. I was very puzzled by this. I have known many in my lifetime that have gone ahead. Even those I have not known, upon hearing of their demise I always felt some degree of sadness. But in this particular case, I felt absolutely nothing one way or another. One day, while I was driving down the road I stopped at a neighbor’s because he was out mowing his lawn. We chatted a bit, then I told him about this woman’s demise and my confusing reaction to it. He told me: “Just because a person died, doesn’t make them a good person”. That hit me like a brick. I just never thought of that. I’m facing a similar dilemma now. Can it be true that if a parent has buried a child, that doesn’t make them a better person?

And now I cry.

If someone has buried their precious and most Beloved, and yet still has a heart of stone?? Well, I’m sorry, but I do not get that… and I’m glad I don’t.

If what Narin has stated is true, and I happen to believe it is, the beautiful become more beautiful…and the ugly become uglier. It’s not that anyone has changed; it’s that what they kept hidden deeply within themselves all along has been revealed. The mask has been ripped off almost violently. The good-hearted ones become better; the bad-hearted ones become bitter. I’m sure that somewhere in the midst of it all, choice is still possible. I have to believe that folks can always choose to become better and more compassionate people because of their great heartache, or they can choose to harden so as to avoid feeling anything for anyone…including themselves. But what a terrible waste if one chooses the latter. Their excruciating pain, their horrific loss, has taught them nothing. They are walking through the valley of the shadow of death with no light in sight. They have no Hope. They themselves are the walking dead.

It truly is my prayer for all who grieve that they choose Love…not hate. That we all allow our deep deep sorrow to soften our hearts. That we become people with great compassion for all who are suffering no matter what the cause may be. Personally, I do not know how much more I can bear in seeing the ‘Grief That Can Be Ugly’. Who desires to stare into the abyss? For one, not I.

(My comments on Narin’s statement are not to be assumed to be her POV).

2 Corinthians 1: (VOICE)

All praise goes to God, Father of our Lord Jesus, the Anointed One. He is the Father of compassion, the God of all comfort. He consoles us as we endure the pain and hardship of life so that we may draw from His comfort and share it with others in their own struggles.


(((HUGS)))  Jude Gibbs, Author of ‘Gifts from the Ashes’ available at:
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Also, a Contributor on ‘The Mighty’:

Please help spread the Word. TY! (((HUGS)))


5 thoughts on “Grief That Can Be Ugly

  1. My daughter works in healthcare and says all the time that mean people get old too. it really made me think since typically I approach the elderly expecting a kind of tenderness and mellowing with age. But it’s just not true all the time. If people practice meanness and bitterness their whole lives, then when old age or hard times or other tragedy strikes, they are very likely to continue being the person they have already worked hard at becoming. It IS difficult for those of us whose hearts have been broken and made more tender this side of child loss to understand. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s a ‘rude awakening’ for me. I guess I just see the world differently than many. Perhaps, an old strain of Idealism from my old ‘hippie’ youth days remains LOL! I just expect more from folks than they are often not willing to give…like simple kindness and respect toward one another. (((HUGS))) TY! Melanie for your comment.

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  2. I can speak to this personally because my ex-husband is a perfect example. He was mad at my daughter-in-law and didn’t speak to our son for over two years r he holds a grudge for a long, long time. He did have a certain amount of regret when my son passed, about $10,000 worth. Once he helped payrr for the funeral his guilt was done. Only the very immediate family was allowedr at to visit my son prior to closing the casket for the funeral. Nick’s fatherrdid not want to take that opportunity and privilege, he declined which rrwas fine with rme because it gave me more time to be with Nicholas before he was locked away from me forever on this earth. It has been almost 14 months since that day and he doesn’t want to talk about our son with my daughter-in-law. TrrrHe thinks only about himself and is mad at her again. He ignores our grandchildren. He’s never checked to see if she needs anything or asked her how she is still a doing. He was selfish and emotionally broken before our son died and he is still the same person now. He wrote off our oldest son years ago. The quote you posted is very true. One quote I’ve seen in Pinterest says that “Grief is love with no place to go.” If you didn’t have a loving relationship with your child, you aren’t going to develop love or grieve when they are gone.!Al70NhSpNxuPpV2sJ6iXYNwT2I9A

    Get Outlook for iOS ________________________________

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    1. I apologize for the previous post. While I was trying to find the full quote about Grief being love with no place to go, Outlook saved the post as a draft and for some reason it added extra letters in the middle of some words. I hope you can make sense in spite of those extra letters. Be sure to open the link for the full quote about Grief.

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  3. TY! Judyann…My ex arrived on the scene when our son was killed and made all the funeral arrangements, burial, etc. Everyone thought he was so kind to do so. They didn’t know that I had to pay for it all through my insurance, nor did they know how he had hired my son to paint some apartments for him and then bounced his two paychecks that he paid our son with shorty before his demise. That was before he turned around and sued me and our other 2 adult sons because we didn’t sue a bunch of people when my son died. “Blood money” is what I called it. (((HUGS))) Yes, Grief does ‘reveal’.

    Liked by 1 person

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