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I have been depressed and scared since Ben left,I try not to be but I feel like my world is falling apart..I applied for widows benefits from social sceurity and here i am it is almost June and have not heard anything . My kids and grandkids are all falling apart and i don't know what to do to help them.How can i help them if i can't help myself . 2 of my graddaughters are having so much trouble dealing with there tatas death and there parents can't see that because there grief is so overwhelming too! These 2 girls are 13 and 14 and Ben and i raised them until Ben got so sick they went to live full time with there parents but before that they spent 90 percent of there time with us the 13 was born to teen parents and we did everything that we could to help my son and his wife and part of that was taking care of Anna and than there is Sandra who is 14 and her mother died when Sandra was born my son her father was in the Army at the time and with all the traveling and everything that he did he was having problems with sitters and everything so it started with we had her when she first came out of hospitol because he was dealing with his wife death and was stationed in Okalahoma and now he is in El Paso so Sandra spent most of her time her with us so they were very close to tata he cared for them while i was at work. and i have been trying to spend time with both of them but it hard to do that when one of them lives so far away. They are like 2 little lost puppies and it hurts so much the worst part is i don't know what to do to help them alot of what they are doing is normal teenage stuff and alot isn't I pray every day that God will help me and my family Ben was the glue that kept us going now he is gone and I don't know how to help them and i can't even talk to him about these problems like i use to God i miss him

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I don't know what they have by you but in Fort Worth, TX they have an organization called The WARM Place which has group sessions for kids that have lost parents/grandparents. The spouse attends their own group session while the kids attend their own. THey are broken up into age groups near their own age. You might try looking them up and see if they know of any organizations like that, that might be by you. I know this helped a bunch when my wife died and my son was around 6 at the time. I hope you will be able to find something like that to help you out. This was a non profit deal so there weren't any fees or the like it was completly free.

I know the feeling that you are having right nopw. It is very difficult to help your children/grand children when you feel like you can't help yourself. I remember that all too well. It has been over 3 years now for me and I can tell you it will get better, it may not seem like it right now but it will.

Love always

Derek

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Lucia,

Have you seen the forum "Teens talking to Teens" here? It might help them to be able to let out some of what they're feeling. If there's a way you could spend time with them, maybe make some cookies together and just let them talk, that'd help. I know my son was in the Air Force when George died (George was his stepfather) and he had a really hard time with it, he'd wake up crying, and of course, he felt he shouldn't show emotion, but it's important that they realize it's normal and yes they should show emotion...he needed to hold it in while working but give himself permission to cry when he was alone.

Marty, any other ideas?

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Lucia, dear ~ Since you live in the Valley and since your beloved Ben was on Hospice of the Valley's service, you have all sorts of resources available to you through our agency, including face-to-face support groups and individual bereavement counseling for you and your family members, if you feel a need for that. Simply call the Bereavement Office, at 602-530-6970 for further information. One of our bereavement counselors could be of great help in guiding you in caring for your grandchildren ~ but I can also tell you that the best way to take care of any child's grief is to take care of your own grief first. Please take a look at some of the articles, books and other resources I have listed on the Child, Adolescent Grief page of my Grief Healing Web site, too. There is a wealth of information and support available to you there, and you need not feel as if you're handling this all alone . . .

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Dear Lucia,

I also wondered how I could help my children when I could barely function. What happened was, I probably couldn't do anything to fix things, but I could hold them and cry with them and talk about how much their dad loved them. They had a hard time watching me go through the pain and my son would be afraid to show any emotion at all because he didn't want to make me sadder. It took a long time and I finally convinced them that nothing can make me sad, I was anyway and that is how it is when you lose someone who meant the world to you. Little by little, they started to regain their sense of security. I was there for them and really that was all I could do. We kept talking and they know that by keeping him in our conversations and remembering him in all we do, their dad will never be completely gone. It comes in waves, for all of us, but we just keep plodding through it. I will keep you and your family in my prayers. It is so very hard, but the things that will help you will also help them...talk, hug, cry, look at pictures, create new traditions, and you will make it. It will still hurt, love just does.

Kath

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thank you all for your advice.i have talked to my children about the bervement group thru hospice but they never respond i hug my girls alot when i am with them we talk constantly about Ben but sometimes i avoid the subject because it makes them so sad but i will try some of the suggestions and i will let them know about this website because i know i always feel better when i am here it helps me to know that someone is going tru the same things i am and that i am not crazy because there are days that i feel like i am going competely out of my mind

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I agree with Derek. My kids went to Camp Amanda in MN and when I first told them about it they didn't want anything to do with it. After their weekend there, they didn't want to leave. Not only did the counselors do a wonderful job of welcoming them and drawing them in, but they saw that they were not the only children going through this. That alone made a huge difference for them. They did fun things as well, in a safe and caring environment.

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