Don’t Ever Say “I Know How You Feel”

Unless you have experienced it yourself

Tia Ella Gliata
3 min readSep 27, 2020


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I can’t remember the exact date, but it was in the year 2010. I was in ninth grade. I remember hearing the news and didn’t know what to say or do.

My English lesson’s friend’s father had died from a car accident that just happened at midnight the night before. It was one of those moments when you felt like the clock just suddenly stopped ticking. Not because I was insanely sad for her. More because I was expecting her to come to the lesson that day and when I heard the news, I didn’t know what to do. I just froze.

It happened on a Friday. My English lesson’s class was held on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I remember thinking that my friend must have been so crushed by what happened to her father that she wouldn’t attend the class for days or even weeks. She was there on Monday. I just looked at her confused and didn’t say anything.

At the time I was wondering, what exactly would it feel like if that happened to my father?

Not that I wish it would happen. I just wonder what it’d feel like. Cause when I heard the news, I felt nothing. My brain just told me, “Oh she must have been so sad. I can’t imagine being in her position.” And I truly can’t. I know it must be sad but I don’t know how sad and what kind of sadness that would be.

It didn’t feel right to console her cause I didn’t know how she was feeling. I just stayed away and let her have her space to grief. Which later on I thought probably the right thing to do cause I wouldn’t be the best person to console her. I didn’t know grief at the time, let alone to tell her how to feel.

Years later, it did happen to me. Five years later to be exact. My dad died of illness. On the day it happened, everything hasn’t sunken in. It just felt like thunder had struck my heart and it felt very painful. So I cried. Many times for hours non-stop. But it wasn’t sadness. It was just pain.

One day after that, the grief started to sink in. I was alone in my apartment not doing much and all of the sudden, I felt it. Out of nowhere, I know what loss is. No one had to tell me. I just felt it.



Tia Ella Gliata

Pouring my heart out. Writing as self-therapy. Healthy lifestyle, exploring, & building a community I’ll devote my life to. Cheerio!