Every person has to deal with grief and loss at some point in their lives. But people have different kinds of reactions when they lose someone or something. Some become helpless while others become angry or sad over the fact that they’re left behind.
These feelings are part of everyone’s life experience. For some, the grieving process may be quick, while others may take a longer while, which could sometimes be frustrating or too much to bear. If you’re unsure how to cope with grief and loss, consider doing the following:
- Seek Out Support
Losing someone like your loved ones or something like your job may sometimes be overwhelming, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to face this struggle alone. There’s no harm in wanting time for yourself, but if you find that you are unable to recover for months on end, it may be time to let others help you. You may be inclined to believe that there’s no one you can turn to but nobody is completely alone. Depending on your situation, you can look for the following people and try asking for their support:
- Psychologists or Therapists at TG Psychology
- Family or Friends
- Church Clergy or Pastors
- Community Grief Center or Support Groups
Even when you find yourself uncomfortable to talk to other people about your feelings, it’s vital to gradually and eventually share how you’re doing in the grieving process, especially if it becomes too much for your to handle alone. Sometimes, telling people what you feel and what you need can help them know the kind of assistance to give you. Most of the time, those who want to help end up not knowing what to do because the person they want to care for doesn’t open up to them. Asking for others’ support can help you with the following:
- Cook for your meals or shop your basic groceries.
- Accompany you in processing documents or signing of the death certificate.
- Remind you of upcoming events you need to participate in.
- Suggest or encourage you to undergo a therapy session when they think it necessary for you.
- Understand the Phases of Grief
As people have different reactions to grief, they have to deal with some stages when losing someone or something they cherish. The stages you experience may also differ in number or order compared to others. It’s best if you yourself will take the time to learn and understand the stages of grief. The more you know about it, easier you can recover from your grief. It is also likely that the healing process will become faster, too. To clear your mind, here are the stages of grief you may experience:
- Avoidance Phase: This stage makes your world feel overwhelming or meaningless. You may feel numb and question the sense of life. Denial can only do so much in helping you survive and cope with your grief since it only lets you take in as much as you can handle. After some time of slowly accepting the reality of the situation, you are subconsciously starting to heal. Therefore, denial will also fade, and the emotions you try to hide or deny will start to surface, too.
- Anger: Even if it’s like an endless emotion, feel the anger. The more you let your anger out, the more feelings are being brought out. For instance, pain or fear is underneath the anger. When dealt with properly, anger can be an anchor to your loss. When you feel angry, you make a structure and connection, and it’s better instead of feeling nothing at all. However, be wary not to lash out on people and drive away those who might simply want to help you.
- Bargaining: After a loss, you’ll be caught up with “what if” and “if only” statements. It’s a reaction of wanting your life the way it was before a loss. In this stage, you’ll think of the things you could have done to prevent the loss, or you may even blame yourself. It may last for months of finding your way out of the pain. However, don’t let it stop you from living in the present as it will soon fade once you accept reality.
- Depression: At some point in the grieving process, you’ll feel depressed. It’s as though your pain won’t ever end. Some people even withdraw from reality. When it’s a significant loss, it’s natural to feel depressed, but when you don’t feel depressed when your someone you love dies, it’s an unusual reaction. Depression is part of the process, so allow yourself to feel this stage but don’t let it overtake your life.
- Acceptance: When you let reality set in, it doesn’t mean that you will automatically feel alright. This stage is when you gradually learn how to live in the present with the absence of your loved one. You will also start to accept that there will be changes and you must be open to accept them. This last stage only happens when you let grief have run its natural course..
Losing someone will either make you feel a lot of emotions or total numbness. This is but normal and part of your grieving process. It may be a difficult path but when you understand grief, acceptance will become easier. Moreover, you can always ask for help whenever you think you can’t handle the grief by yourself.