When someone you loved passes away, it will surely shake you to the core. Losing a parent or a sibling or a child or spouse can be devastating, and all you feel is grief and pain. Nobody can prepare for so much grief. No matter how strong you are, grief may bring you down. On the other hand, grieving may also help you to become a better person. With the right guidance and with the love and support from your family and friends, the pain may subside little by little until you are able to cope up and recover. To help you through grief and mourning, here’s a guideline for dealing with grief:
Learn the Stages of Grief
Different individuals process grief in different ways. Each one may experience these stages in various orders. In order to deal with grief properly and step forward in life, learning the stages of grief can be an advantage.
Stage of Denial
The stage of denial is usually what most people experience when a loved one passed away. It is the body’s natural reaction to the pain and grief that it is not capable of handling. Suppressing the reality and thinking that what happened is not true is, perhaps, the easier way to get through the pain. On the other hand, denying the fact may also lead to confusion and depression and a wide array of emotions.
Reality will eventually set in and you are left to face it whether you want it or not. All the feelings of frustration and helplessness become a feeling of anger. It can be anger to the people around or to the person who caused the death of a loved one, or it can also be anger to the person who passed away because he or she left you alone. Anger may seem a natural reaction but it can lead to deep hatred and depression.
The stage of bargaining is the stage of thinking too many “what ifs” and if only” and on the things that you could have done instead to prevent death. It could be an attempt to offer anything in exchange for the life of a loved one. This stage may lead to frustrations and disappointments, thinking that you failed to do something for the person. On the other hand, bargaining may cause a person to blame himself.
Coping with grief is a difficult phase in life. Although it is natural to grieve and mourn when a loved one passed away, feeling a deeper sense of sadness and emptiness will lead to depression and to long-term sadness. Intense pain, sadness, and lack of energy to do the usual things are probably among the normal experiences throughout the stage. Depression, on the other hand, can be coped with when the reality is accepted. By knowing that the pain and grief will pass eventually, even if it feels like it never will, depression is a normal stage of grief.
The stage of acceptance happens when the reality is wholeheartedly accepted and recognized. It may not be a pleasant feeling at first to accept the fact that someone you love will no longer be there physically, but accepting the truth is the best way to start anew and move forward. It can be tough to move forward, but with the support of your family and friends, things will get better as soon as you accept it with a whole heart.
Let Your Family and Friends Comfort You
Dealing with grief and coping with pain is not easy. You need help and support from other people. If you have friends and a group of people that you can trust, it is an advantage and for your benefit, if you will seek support from them. You can share your thoughts or sentiments with them and it will be a great relief if you will be able to burst out your emotions. With people who listen and hug you or hold your hand, their support will give you comfort.
No matter how unprepared you are for losing a loved one you have to help yourself cope up and deal with grief. Your goal is to accept reality so that you can process grief and mourning in a positive way. It is a normal experience to grieve, but you have to know that the grieving process should have an end and that life has to go on.
One way to help your self is to give denial an end and start finding an acceptance. It does not have to happen right away or in an instant, but taking it one step at a time will make the burden lighter as days pass by.
As you accept reality, it is also of great help if you will accept the changes it brings. Things may not be the same again as before. However, in all these changes, it is important that you know and keeps in mind that there are also things that may remain the same. You still have your family and friends with you, and that the person who passed away will never be gone in your heart and in your mind.
Grief and mourning is an essential part of bereavement but it will soon allow you to live again to the fullest. By taking things in its proper perspective and with a positive mind, dealing with grief is possible although it may take time.