Mindy Memories

Thursday, October 19, 2006

On comparing pain

Had a lot going on the last few weeks. I'm not going to put it all down on "paper" now, but wanted to post here. Nothing bad going on, just busy.

My question today is: Why do we tend to compare our pain and suffering to others and think that nobody could possibly feel as bad as we do when we lose someone we care about?

This came up on one of the childfree boards I visit. There was a discussion about how some people really lose it over an early miscarriage. Many people don't understand that. I do to a point, but since I'm not a kid person and don't want any, I really can't completely comprehend it. However, for the person who loses a baby, it can be very painful. Even though she didn't have the child and "know" it, doesn't mean she didn't have ideas and hopes for the child, hopes that were instantly dashed. It's painful.

Then another person said she couldn't understand how people can go to pieces over losing their grandparent who is 80+. Perhaps this person wasn't close or didn't know her grandparents, but when my grandmother died in her 70s it was very hard, and it's going to be hard when my still-living grandmother dies. She's in her 90s and has gone downhill quite a bit in the last few months and it's sad for me to see.

When we lose someone, whether it's a child, spouse, brother, parent, grandparent, uncle, friend, pet -- whatever -- it hurts. I hate it when people get into the "I hurt worse than you" crap because it completely disregards the feelings of the person who supposedly is supposed to be over it. There's no time limit to these things. My grandmother died in 1989 when I was 18. I moved on, got over it, etc. However, I often find myself thinking if she would be proud of me, what she would say to me, if she'd still call me a "dumb bunny" if I did something stupid (lol), and I wonder if she's looking down on me and approving of me. I'm sure that sounds really corny, but it's true.

So please, next time your childless friend is heartbroken because her cat died, don't tell her to get over it a few days later because it was "just a cat." If your friend miscarries, don't tell her to get over it the next week because "it wasn't even really a baby yet." A little compassion can go a long way sometimes.



  • At 10:37 PM, Blogger claudia said…

    You are so very right! When my mom was dying and they were talking about taking her off the respirator, my (then) boss said she couldn't understand why I didn't just get back to work! I didn't speak to her again after that. I put in for a transfer as soon as I got back from my bereavemnt leave. I could never work for anyone that heartless, nor could I ever be that heartless!


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