I wrote tonight. I’ve had a story in mind about a child whose father died, only because she doesn’t understand euphemisms,the child, Amy, believes that her father has physically abandoned her in favour of better behaved children. As her Nanna says, ‘He’s left us to go and live with the Angels . At no point does anyone use the word ‘dead’ which might have given Amy a better understanding.
Amy decides she will never attempt to be good again ( there’s no point she’s been abandoned for angels) and given incompetent bereavement care she becomes disruptive with verbal and physical punches. There are reasons why Amy is not told the truth of her father’s death.
It will be tempting for those of you who know me to assume these are my experiences. They are not. But I am interested in how death is a disappearance of an individual and how children deal with that and how the seek to make sense of the gap.
Also euphemism in the midst of other half truths can exacerbate an individual’s sense of betrayal . Why o why am I exploring this murky territory? I have no idea! just that I wanted to explore the ideas of loss and abandonement that shape later behaviour and decisions leading to a betrayal of self.