Stages of grief

No two people deal with grief in the same way nor do they necessarily experience all the stages of grief. The grieving process is a very personal journey and for this reason we all grieve in our own way. It cannot be seen that because someone is not expressing their grief in a way that is familiar to you that this person is not feeling deeply saddened by the loss of his or her loved one.

One needs to keep in mind these emotions do not necessarily occur in the same order and intensity. Because we are all unique individuals, we feel and do things in our own special way therefore, it is not unusual for some to experience fewer stages of mourning than others nor spend more time getting to a place of peace and acceptance than someone else.

Disbelief / Denial! You believe it is not possible for this to have happened. You fiercely believe you will see your loved one walk through the door again. You do not accept he or she has passed away and is gone forever. This cannot be true!

We must remember that this is an extreme event in a person’s life and to help us cope; we find ways to sooth and pacify ourselves. Kind of like shielding ourselves from the reality of losing someone dear.

 Anger! You may feel immense anger towards others for reasons you believe are valid even though they aren’t. You may even act out in rage over a minor incident even though this is not peculiar to your usual temperament. You may feel anger toward yourself for reasons that appear valid to you at the time.

Bargaining! It is not uncommon for people who lose someone suddenly and unexpectedly to believe that if they make a pact of some kind with themselves or with God in the hope that that it will bring back your loved one. Remember this is a devastating and confusing time, so wanting things back the way they were is understandable.

Guilt! Feelings of not doing enough or not loving this person enough or not spending enough time with them or not getting to say goodbye.

Sadness and depression! Feelings of immense loss, emptiness, confusion

Acceptance! A time for healing and renewal and new opportunities

Change presents many powerful opportunities Use this time of change to grow as a person. You owe it to yourself and to all your loved ones.