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How to deal with grief

How to deal with grief

It can be very difficult and painful to deal with grief, so if you are struggling do seek help from a professional, such as a counsellor or your GP.

One of the most painful events in life is losing someone you know, love or care for. Death is something we will all experience at some point in our life.

Bereavement is the natural process we go through when losing someone important to us. It is an inevitable part of life’s journey, but also one of the most painful experiences we endure.

Time, as they say, is a great healer, and indeed that is true, the whole process of grief takes time, it does ease, and we learn to live with that loss.

Whether it’s our partner, parent, child, relative, friend or other close acquaintance we can feel overwhelmed. Feelings of loss can be devastating, leaving us feeling we just cannot go on without our loved one. We may go through a rollercoaster of emotions, denial, what if’s, anger the person has left us, abandonment, tearfulness, all of which are perfectly normal and part of the grieving process.

The death of a baby, child or young person is particularly devastating as the natural order of life is that we live to a ripe old age. We feel sadness at the loss of someone who has lived a long life, but are able to accept that it is in the normal order of life. We still grieve but with a sense of acceptance.

When it is a baby we grieve for what might have been, endlessly question whether we did something wrong, or someone else did or something else could have been done. The natural human need to protect young life is thwarted and we can feel useless and helpless.

As parents we are constantly looking out for and protecting our children and young people and the death of a young one is excruciatingly painful.

If feelings of numbness, intense pain, anger, guilt, sleeplessness and lack of self care persist it is vital to seek professional help. Bereavement counselling really can make an immense difference and greatly help ease the pain of loss.

It is really important you feel you can take charge of your path to recovery, there are no rules, other than those you choose to make. It is your life, your loss, you can choose how to go forward, embracing any help you wish to take on your way. As long as you are connecting with others, eating, sleeping, and generally self-caring you will gradually recover from your loss. That doesn’t mean we should forget about the loved one, far from it, we should, if we wish, talk about the person, allow memories to surface, that person will always be part of our life.

The only way we avoid the devastation of grief is by not engaging with love. It is true that we come into this life on our own and leave on our own, but it’s what happens in the precious life that’s lived in between. As the poet Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote “’Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all”.

Further information and support on bereavement

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