Going to a support group ....

I resisted going to a support group. The thought of being in a room full of other sad people sounded depressing to me. I also was afraid that I would break down and cry -- which terrified me.

Monica and I didn't really argue, but we sure didn't agree as to whether we should go. Finally I agreed to go to one session, with the understanding that if I didn't like it, I wouldn't go back.

I was very nervous that first night, but relieved to see several other dads. Luckily for me, the man next to me spoke first about his loss and where he was at. As he spoke, he broke down and sobbed. He didn't even attempt to hold back. To my amazement, no one went running out the room, laughed at him, or in any way showed anything but sympathy and understanding toward him. That was a turning point for me, because I thought if he could do that, I wouldn't be afraid to. The support group became a place I looked forward to going -- not only because we made wonderful friends, but it was the one place I could let down and did not need to hold back. That man's tears were one of the greatest gifts I got at that time.

How about you? Did you go to a group? If so, how was it? If you didn't, do you regret it? Did your decision either way cause disagreements with your partner?

This is a big stumbling block for lots of guys. Let's give them some information to help them decide how they want to move forward. Thanks


  1. My wife and I go to a group. I was very keen because just after Emma was still born I was absolutely desperate to find other men who had been through similar experiences. The group provided that and made me feel greatly reassured and a lot less isolated. What I particularly like about the meetings is that no one judges any of the comments, you can just say what you feel.

  2. Hi -- I was at a meeting on Saturday and somehow missed your post when it came to my cell phone. Sorry.

    I agree with you about the support group. I did not want to go initially, but once I did, found it to be very helpful. Thanks for commenting.

  3. We went to a group - ISANDS here in Ireland, quite shortly after our baby girl died last December.

    It was incredibly tough to sit in a room full of people who were so raw and hurt. It felt like we had all just been transported in a moment from a battlefield where we had witnessed things that left us reeling.

    We all told our stories and it seemed like each couple had a tale that was worse than the previous one.

    It was a comfort though to realise that we were not alone in our experience, and to know that of all the people in our lives, these strangers could most completely identify with what we were going through. These were the people who have walked the same road.

    All in all, the meetings can be emotionally draining but I think it is important to give them a go.

    As dad's this experience is tough and isolating so it's important to take an opportunity to speak about it with others when you can. As other posters have mentioned, most of the time, particularly with guys, it seems like people just don't want to know what you are going through.