Bereavement Support Services
Impact of Death on Parents
Gender and Grief
Gender differences may also lead to conflict and misunderstanding between parents.
There is a wealth of research exploring gender differences regarding grieving and bereavement. Men are reported as more likely to contain their emotions, grieve alone and use physical activities as an expression of grief. Women are more likely to openly-express their feelings and want to talk about the death.
It is important to note that current literature acknowledges that some women do not grieve like most women and some men do not grieve like most men. The following information points out some of the differences between not just male/female grief but mother/father grief.
Feminine grief may include:
Masculine grief may include:
Couples will have different styles, timetables and meaning in dealing with the death and loss. Giving permission to each other (partners, family members) to grieve individually, as is appropriate and most useful for them, is key to not only the survival of the relationship but the health of it. Current research findings do not demonstrate that there are higher divorce or separation rates in couples that experience the death of a child. Relationships with family and spouses may strengthen or weaken over time.9