The death of a child is a devastating and life changing event. A child's death leaves parents struggling to somehow pick up the pieces of their shattered life and continue living. In the aftermath of their loss, parents are often surprised and disappointed to discover how difficult it is to talk to one another about their child's death. Likewise, parents may be frustrated to learn that they grieve very differently from their spouse. In many cases, one parent wants to talk a great deal about the child's death while the other does not. In addition, one parent may be more likely to express their grief through open displays of emotion while the other chooses to grieve more privately. The differences in how they grieve and talk about their child's death can create marital conflict. However, parents can use five communication practices to help them to accept their individual grieving styles and still share the loss as a couple.
Toller, Paige W., "Using Communication to Cope with Loss" (2009). Communication Faculty Publications. 7.