Burden Of Truth

Lurking in my heart is a truth that I don’t want.

Lately the burden seems heavier than normal as I watch my girls with my new husband and the man they have deemed “Dad.” When he interacts with them and I see the joy light up their faces, it’s bittersweet. When they call down the hall for one more bed time hug from “Dad.” I smile and want to cry.

Every day that passes is closer to when they will want to know the truth that I have carefully hidden from them. They will know that Dan chose death over fatherhood.

For now all they know is that Dan was sick inside his mind and that he is dead. They have never heard the term “suicide” and in their innocence I don’t think they could even fathom what it means. Yet, with the same persistence children have towards “Why is the sky blue,” or “why do dogs have fur.” They are going to inevitably want to know more about his death. All the “Whys” “Hows” and “What Ifs”

I have carried and battled all the feelings by myself while the children remain safe within their beliefs that Dan didn’t want to go and that they were loved. As they get older, the time will come that they will feel as I do. They will struggle with the unanswered questions, wrestle with self esteem when it feels that they weren’t enough to live for and battle the darkness of what suicide actually is.

The burden of the truth is a heavy reminder every day. Knowing that I will have to share information that will break their hearts one day. The truth that will be delivered from my lips to the three little girls I have done everything to guard from pain.

For now I try to watch them soaking in the love of a “Dad.” Gazing at them nestled against someone who makes them feel precious. Listening as every time they say “I love you” it is returned with more love and kisses. Hoping that it will be enough to shield them from the pain that will come. Praying that this acceptance that they have found will protect their hearts from the rejection that will lurk in their minds. Hoping that they can remember the good memories to overcome the bad.

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4 replies

  1. they are strong girls and God will give them the strength to handle the information when it is time, just as God will give you the strength to tell them. For now though, they have a wonderful new dad, just like you have the man you deserve. šŸ™‚ God has blessed beyond what could be deemed imaginable, and as long as you continue to lean to Him, He wll give you the words and the way. You are an amazing woman, and in this situation, too, you will be victorious! i love you!!! and all of those precious little balls of energy that are your babies! can’t wait to see you friday! šŸ˜€

  2. I always thought suicide was selfish … the cowardly way out of pain. In a way I guess I still do. And yet … by allowing me to walk a very dark path, God has granted me greater compassion and understanding. When someone loses a battle with cancer … we are angry at the illness that took them. Why then … when someone loses the battle with depression … do we condemn the person rather than the disease? I’m not saying that he made the right choice. Just that I understand that in that moment … when he could see nothing but the darkness, feel nothing but the pain … it wasn’t that you and the girls were not enough! It wasn’t! It was just that HE lost his grip on hope and joy. It really had little or nothing to do with who he was as a husband and father … it was who he was as a person and he didn’t like himself enough to face another moment. He wasn’t rejecting them … he was rejecting himself! I don’t know if I’m making sense! I have really struggled with this lately as my depression has suddenly included dark, unwelcome, thoughts that are foreign to my spirit. Yesterday those thoughts told me that my life insurance would provide a better future for my family than I could. If I had given in … in that moment … it would have been because I really truly believed I was doing a better thing for them. I still had a firm enough grip on hope, love, joy, God … to be pulled back from the edge. For whatever reason … Dan didn’t. And I’m sorry for the pain that causes you and your precious girls. But I really hope you can believe that it wasn’t rejection! He just gave up! Love you, my friend!

  3. Alicia, God will take care of the time – when it comes. I pray that you can continue to pray and that you can find someone to talk to about your feelings now. If not your new husband, then someone else. Praying for you dear.

  4. My son is a donor conceived child. The man who donated his swimmers wished to remain anonymous and 13 children have been birthed by infertile couples through his donations. Before we were allowed to purchase from the “bank”, we had to receive some counseling. The counselor advised us that waiting for children to be “old enough” to handle the truth makes them feel betrayed and feel like they are a dirty little secret. I tell Jack from time to time that he is donor conceived. He has no idea what that is but he doesn’t think it’s odd or different. Whereas you need to tell children in a way that is age appropriate…I don’t use the words or body parts. I know this doesn’t compare to death but what I’m saying is that I would talk with a professional about it if I were you. Get a professional opinion, research it and follow their plan without emotion. Dealing with suicide is even more difficult because of the points you have already mentioned. What I have learned is that dirty little family secrets can rip a family apart. Land mines are easier to navigate. There is no parenting handbook that will magically appear when we birth a child. Sometimes we have to ask for guidance. I think having a dad will help them to deal. If he had not done as he did, your girls would not know Brian and those bedtimes hugs would never have happened. It will probably never be easy. You are all changed forever because of it.

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