Sunday, June 10, 2012

Men Do Cry - preparing for Fathers Day next week

Fathers Day is next Sunday, June 17th and for dads who are grieving, this holiday can be an especially difficult challenge...  For so many of us who grieve for our children, certain days - like Fathers Day, birthdays and memorial anniversaries can be Grief Triggers, and for dads who often work hard to hide their emotions, the pain can be almost unbearable.

Since the deaths of my own three children, it always saddens me to watch grieving dads struggle with their unwritten sense of pride and responsibility, watching as they try to hide or cover their pain, often feeling guilty for showing their emotions - afraid of appearing weak...  To me, tears and emotions are simply releases that allow us to survive this journey and I've always believed that all the tears we shed for our children are simply representative of our tremendous love for them and therefore OK...  I've received so many poems from parents and grandparents, for use on our blog for various events, but of all that I've received, this one seems the most appropriate as dads prepare themselves this week for the "Grief Trigger" that Fathers Day brings...

~ by Ken Falk

I heard quite often "men don’t cry"
though no one ever told me why.
So when I fell and skinned a knee,
no one came by to comfort me.

And when some bully-boy at school
would pull a prank so mean and cruel,
I’d quickly learn to turn and quip,
"It doesn’t hurt," and bite my lip.

So as I grew to reasoned years,
I learned to stifle any tears.
Though "Be a big boy" it began,
quite soon I learned to "Be a man."

And I could play that stoic role
while storm and tempest wracked my soul.
No pain or setback could there be
could wrest one single tear from me.

Then one long night I stood nearby
and helplessly watched my son die.
And quickly found, to my surprise,
that all that tearless talk was lies.

And still I cry, and have no shame.
I cannot play that "big boy" game.
And openly, without remorse,
I let my sorrow takes its course.

So those of you who can’t abide
a man you’ve seen who’s often cried,
reach out to him with all your heart
as one whose life’s been torn apart.

For men DO cry when they can see
their loss of immortality.
And tears will come in endless streams
when mindless fate destroys their dreams.

Ken has been a member of the Northwest Connecticut Chapter of The Compassionate Friends

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