How Songwriting Can Help Heal a Motherless Child

By Guest Contributor: Sally Writes

Up to 8% of households in the USA are headed by a single father raising at least one minor child. Children who are brought up in motherless homes face a higher risk of isolation due to the fact that they feel uncomfortable and left-out when other children talk about their mothers. There is no disputing that many single fathers do phenomenal jobs raising their children alone but one also can’t deny the damage losing a mother does to a child.

The entire world changes when a child loses their mother, especially during their formative years. Not only do they lose their first friend but also a role-model and confidant. This is one of the most monumental losses that can ever be inflicted upon a child. It shakes their very core and has the potential to alter their entire life-paths. Healing after a loss is never easy and therapy often hard to assign as grief manifests itself in many different forms. One form of treatment for debilitating grief comes in the form of music, and more specifically, songwriting.

Healing through songwriting

Music has always been believed to have healing properties but it is only in recent years that music in its entirety has been granted therapeutic status. Songwriting is fast gaining popularity as a broad-spectrum therapy method that can be utilized across the human life cycle. Writing a song doesn’t only facilitate self-expression but it also allows a grieving individual to tell their story in a non-threatening environment.

By encouraging a grieving young soul to put their emotions to paper they are being presented with an invaluable opportunity to rid themselves of the burden of pain, isolation, fear, transition and perhaps even shame that has been festering inside of them. No two people have the same story to tell which means no two songs will ever be the same. You own your lyrics just like you own the emotions behind them.

A famous song about a special mother

Not many music lovers may know this but Paul McCartney wrote The Beatles’ hit song ‘Let It Be’ about his mother, Mary, who died when he was 14 years old. Although the song was only written 12 years after her death it finally brought the closure he was grappling to find for more than a decade. This is just one of many songs written as an ode to a loved one that found great resonance within the world. ‘Let It Be’ has almost achieved hymn status, especially after the amount of radio-time it received shortly after the 9/11 terror attacks on the USA.

Music is a universal language, one everyone can understand and everyone can relate to. Writing your own song about the loss of your mother can bring much-needed closure and acceptance.  The pain will never fade overnight but it will, in time, ebb until mostly good memories remain.