What is Grief ?
Grief is the internal part of loss, how we feel. The internal work of grief is a process, a journey. It does not end on a certain day or date. It is as individual as each of us. Grief is real because loss is real. Each grief has its own imprint, as distinctive and as unique as the person we lost. The pain of loss is so intense, so heartbreaking, because in loving we deeply connect with another human being, and grief is the reflection of the connection that has been lost.
What is the difference between grief and mourning ?
Mourning is the external part of loss. It is the actions we take, the rituals and the customs. Grief is the internal part of loss, how we feel. The internal work of grief is a process, a journey.
When does grief end ?
Grief is not just a series of events, or stages or timelines. Our Society places enormous pressure on us to get over loss, to get through the grief. But how long do you grieve for a husband of fifty years? A teenager killed in a car accident? A four-year-old child? A year? Five years? Forever? The loss happens in time, in fact in a moment, but its aftermath lasts a lifetime.
What are the 5 stages of grief and do they always occur in the same order ?
The five stages, denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance are a part of the framework that makes up our learning to live with the one we lost. They are tools to help us frame and identify what we may be feeling. But they are not stops on some linear timeline in grief. Not everyone goes through all of them or in a prescribed order.The stages have evolved since their introduction and they have been very misunderstood over the past three decades. They were never meant to help tuck messy emotions into neat packages. They are responses to loss that many people have, but there is not a typical response to loss as there is no typical loss. Our grief is as individual as our lives.
How long does grief last?. Do I ever get over the loss of a loved one?
Grief is the healing process that helps us deal with the loss of a loved-one. Grief does not have a clear beginning or clear end to it. Rather, it is a reflection of feelings surrounding the loss. Grief will ebb and flow throughout our life after a loss. We don’t get over the loss of someone, but we learn to live with that loss. We also will eventually remember and honor our loved one without feeling pain. We will grieve as long as we need to.
Are bereavement support groups helpful?. How can i find one near me?
Bereavement support groups are very helpful. Many times when you are in the middle of your grief, you may feel that the world has moved on. Support groups provide you with a safe place to talk about your loss and experience your feelings with others who are also experiencing similar feelings. You can find a local bereavement group that is facilitated by your local hospital, hospice, counseling center and/or place of worship. Or visit our grief advice partnerLeeds Bereavement Forum
Do children experience grief ?
Yes, if children are old enough to love, they are old enough to grieve. Many times in our society children are the forgotten grievers. For instance, when a parent dies, whom do we expect to help the child with their grief? The surviving parent. That parent not only has their own grief to deal with but they are learning for the first time how to be a single parent. They, like their child, can use support in their grieving. Children don’t grieve the way we do. They don’t openly talk about how they are feeling. A death in their life usually causes them to feel even more different than usual. Kids feel different enough – a death causes them to feel even more different and isolated. Bereavement groups are extremely helpful for children since they are with other children who have experienced a loss also
Should a child go to a funeral? If so, how do i prepare them?
Many people feel that children should not be allowed at funerals, either because the children will be upset or they’ll be distracting. When deciding whether or not your child should attend, treat a funeral just as you would a wedding, graduation or any other formal event. If you’re going to be busy at the ceremony and can’t attend to your child, then have someone else you and your child trust mind him or her. I’ve found, however, that children generally behave quite well at funerals if they’re given three things: Prior preparation. Tell them what’s going to happen, where they’ll be sitting, for how long, and that people may be crying. If the child wants to go, he should be allowed to. If the child says he doesn’t want to go, his choice should be honored. If he’s old enough to understand, explain that this will be a good chance to say good-bye to the deceased. Support. Make sure the child has someone to comfort her if she is upset or grieving. If you’re going to be busy during the funeral, or if you’re grieving too much to help your child, find someone who can help. Follow-up after the funeral. Talk about what has happened, what it meant and what they thought of it. Help your children put the loss and the ceremony in proper perspective