Early Childhood Loss and Trauma

I don’t want to talk about it. I don’t want to think about it. I don’t want to deal with it. It was fifty years ago for godsake. Move on, get over it. Don’t dwell on it.


Those are thoughts that ramble around in my mind. Some of the things were said to me, some of them I said to myself. The moral of the story every time is “Don’t feel what you feel.” For the love of GOD move away from those feelings.


And yet, they find me. Unresolved, unsupported childhood trauma can become a backdrop of an adult life. It’s unpredictable in it’s effect and presentation.


The stats are clear.

Rates of childhood grief

  • 5.3 million U.S. children experience the death of a parent or sibling.

  • 1/5 U.S. children are grieving the death of someone close to them

The need to Talk About Grief

  • 54% of people struggle to find grief resources.

  • 57% of those who lost a parent during childhood report that support from family and friends waned within 3 months, although it took an average of six years to move forward.

COVID-19 and grief

  • For every 100,000 Americans who die from COVID-19, between 125,000 and 150,000 young people (ages 10 to 29) will be impacted.

  • COVID-19 related deaths of relatives who represent key sources of social support can fundamentally alter youths’ economic security and, in turn, the success and timing of their transition to adulthood.

Potential impacts of childhood bereavement

Statistics gleaned from ChildrenGrieve.org


The statistics represent the human stories which are endless. What is common is that when you knock off the hard shell that surrounds the feelings, you will find, every time, a child that is scared. Inside every adult is a frightened child who wants to be heard and held. I have no science to prove that, only story after story. Stories that need to be told and believed.


The Healing Chickadee is a love offering from one child to every child, even the adult children. Especially the adult children of trauma. The stories, activities and music are an invitation to communication and an opportunity for connection.


If you know a child who has been affected by the death of a loved one, please consider sending the Healing Chickadee. This is not therapy, this a group of birds called the Tweethearts, that arrive with words of tender comfort and understanding. Children should never grieve alone.