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Children and Holidays

Posts: 12
Joined: Jul 2009

I'm trying to help a friend whose wife recently died. He has school aged children (older elementary and middle school) and this will be their first holiday without their mother.

He's considering taking them on a trip instead of attempting a traditional holiday, but is looking for resources or information on the pros and cons of that. Does anyone have experience with this situation? Or know of books or other internet sites that might address this? Until now their holidays have always been spent at home without extended family around - just the nuclear family.

The wife/mother died unexpectedly a few weeks ago. She did not have cancer, but I'm a recent cancer survivor so I know this board is a great resource, and that's why I'm posting here.

Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2008

i just lost my wife to sclc on 10/14,and am wondering the same thing.Right after she passed i took the kids to see my mom (and give myself a reprive)and it ended up being not so good for my 13 yr old... he felt isolated from his suport network.His 12 yr old brother felt the opposite,and loved the time away.ive found that open discussion with the kids helps the most,but expecialy with youngers they dont always know what they want or need.I'm gonna stay home this holiday season,but ill be interested in how this thread goes...

Posts: 13
Joined: Jun 2006

I don't know if there is a right answer. We know they'll miss their mom either way, as will he. No destination will take the burden of her loss away.

For me, I'd rather stay home and have family come to me. I'd be comforted by familiar surroundings. I know company has helped me steal some minutes from my grief - even given me a chance to laugh.

Posts: 118
Joined: Oct 2009

This will be the first holiday the kids (23, 21 & 13) and I have ever spent without my husband. We usually have dinner at home (Thanksgiving) and then go over to my sister-in-laws for dessert. I have asked the kids what they would like to do. (My husband battled head and neck cancer for 2 years- I have found along the way that the thing that works best for us is to have family talks. This can include anything from treatment options to holiday scheduling - there are no right or wrongs, only opinions). My younger child wants to spend the day with his cousins and the older 2 want to spend the day at home. I am thinking that may be I should have everyone over to my house for the day. I think this would solve our problem. We are very close to my sister in law, her family and my mother in law. We were all together when Mike passed. It was very difficult to watch this beautiful man leave this earth, but was so happy to be surrounded by so much love. I do not know if we will start a "new" tradition to honor Mike? Set a place for him - have everyone recall one fond memory - put up a remembrance table in his honor - have a toast to Mike?? This one will definitely need to go to the discussion table. ~Cheryl

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