You will find it is so very true what we often say, “You Need Not Walk Alone!”
Here on The Compassionate Friends national website, you will find support in a number of different ways.
Find a local TCF Chapter with our Chapter Locator.
Join one of our private Facebook groups to interact with other parents, grandparents and siblings.
TCF’s Online Support Community (live chats) allows you to talk with other bereaved parents, grandparents and siblings from across the country during the Online Support Community sessions held every week. These sessions are limited in number of participants and have trained monitors who are also bereaved parents, grandparents and siblings.
Recommended materials are offered through our TCF Exclusives.
All TCF National Conferences and many regional conferences offer workshops and other activities specifically geared for bereaved siblings.
We Need Not Walk Alone, the national magazine of The Compassionate Friends includes stories for siblings as well as the popular sibling column “Ask Dr. Heidi.” Click here to sign up to receive a free online subscription to this magazine.
We hope you will join us and have the opportunity to interact with other parents, grandparents and siblings who “get” what you’re going through.
We are the grieving grandparents, the shepherds of our children and grandchildren’s lives. Our grief is two-fold and at times we feel powerless to help. We seek to comfort our children in the depths of their grief and yet we need the time and space to face our own broken hearts. We have been robbed of the special tender touch a grandparent shares with a grandchild and we have lost a symbol of our immortality. As we walk by our child’s side, we both give and draw strength. We reach into their hearts to comfort them, and when they reach out to us in their distress, we begin the journey to heal together. We continue to be their guardians. We allow traditions to change to accommodate their loss. We support the new ones which symbolize the small steps on their journey. It is in their healing that our hearts find comfort. ~ Susan Mackey, TCF, Rutland, VT
“When you close your eyes and remember, don’t forget that your sibling rests yet in you, in your heart and in your thoughts, in everything you do. They will never leave you alone. You have a listener at your beck and call. What a gift!” – from a Sibling
When a child has died, siblings are often referred to as “the forgotten mourners.” While parents usually receive most of the support of relatives and friends, siblings generally receive little—often being asked “How are your parents doing?” The Compassionate Friends is an organization that is not just for bereaved parents. It’s also for bereaved siblings (and grandparents). Some Chapters have sibling subgroups (which welcome siblings age 14 and up) while adult siblings are welcome at all TCF Chapter meetings.
Also, we invite you to contact our National Office at 877-969-0010 and request a customized bereavement packet assembled just for you. There is no charge. We will also be happy to give you a referral to your nearest TCF chapter so you can attend when you feel ready.
We are the surviving siblings of The Compassionate Friends.
We are brought together by the deaths of our brothers and sisters.
Open your hearts to us, but have patience with us.
Sometimes we will need the support of our friends.
At other times we need our families to be there.
Sometimes we must walk alone, taking our memories with us,
continuing to become the individuals we want to be.
We cannot be our dead brother or sister;
however, a special part of them lives on with us.
When our brothers and sisters died, our lives changed.
We are living a life very different from what we envisioned,
and we feel the responsibility to be strong even when we feel weak.
Yet we can go on because we understand better than many others
the value of family and the precious gift of life.
Our goal is not to be the forgotten mourners that we sometimes are, but to walk together to face our tomorrows as surviving siblings of The Compassionate Friends.
Use the chapter locator to find out information about chapters in your area. Locate a Chapter by selecting your state and zip code.
1000 Jorie Blvd., Suite 140, Oak Brook, Illinois 60523