"Many families celebrate and express appreciation to their dads on Father's Day, but those whose father has died experience many difficult challenges and emotions," said
The Highmark Caring Place offers these suggestions for children and families who are dealing with the death of a father:
- Realize that the anticipation of the day is often as difficult - or even more difficult - than the holiday itself.
- Talk about your grief and the person who died. Share your feelings with people you trust. Say the name of the person who died and invite others to do the same.
- Embrace your memories. Memories are one of the best legacies that exist after someone dies. Allowing time for family members to share their memories, and laughing and crying together, helps keep the person who died a part of these special days.
"We encourage families to talk about the upcoming day in advance," said Vorsheck. "Deciding how to spend the day ahead of time might help families avoid getting caught off-guard by emotions that are difficult to anticipate. Sharing your feelings with one another, along with a little bit of planning, can help you find ways of honoring and remembering someone you love very much, but who is no longer with you."
At four Caring Place locations in
The Caring Place has also created a series of reference tools that are available in print or online to help families and professionals who are trying to find answers to questions concerning grief. Topics include:
- Saying Goodbye: Preparing a Child for a Funeral or Cremation
- Responding to Children in Grief and the Questions They Ask
- Questions Grieving Children Ask
- The Grief of Preschoolers and the Questions They Ask
- Questions Grieving Teens Ask
- The Grieving Child in the Classroom
- Is There Anything I Can Do? (for teens)
- Is There Anything I Can Do? (for adults)
- Caring for Yourself as You Care for Your Grieving Child
- Coping with Grief at the Holidays
- Telling the Children: Talking with a Child When a Parent Is Diagnosed with a Terminal Illness
- Creating Connections When a Parent Is Diagnosed with a Terminal Illness
To secure copies of any of the print publications, visit the Highmark Caring Place online at www.highmarkcaringplace.com.
The Caring Place is a signature partner of Highmark Healthy High 5, an initiative of the Highmark Foundation, and is also supported by community contributions.
For more information about the Highmark Caring Place, contact 1-888-224-HOPE (4673) or visit www.highmarkcaringplace.com.
Visit http://www.highmarkcaringplace.com/pdf/cp_story_carrie.pdf to read Carrie's story, a firsthand account of a child who attended the Caring Place and lost her father.
SOURCE Highmark Caring Place