I just want to know when I will be able to stop crying over my Daddy's death. He was 93, in pain and suffering but yet I can't stop crying over losing him and it's been over a month since he's been gone.
I was looking for a support group when I found this article. My son passed away the 24th of May in a traffic accident. I've lost other family members in the past but it's very different to lose a child. Thank you for the article. ~Dianna
I happened on this article accidently, but I am currently grieving the loss of my sweet little dog. Sometimes I feel guilty for the grief - after all she was a dog... but she was my little fur-baby, and after almost 12 years together, her loss was heart breaking. I am sending this to my DH to read as well, as he is every bit as heart broken as I am. Thanks for the guidance and support
1/28/2013 11:36:21 AM
Thank you for this great and helpful article, Dean! I lost my sister to cancer, my better half, my best friend, my everything last year. I loved (still do) her so much. At a sudden she's gone and I'm alone. We did so much together that everything reminded me of her. I was devastated. My life changed. All my happiness and joy was gone and I had lost interest in everything. Thanks of a professional online coach (recommend you Your24hcoach) I called anytime I needed to talk me every thought off my chest I recognized that you have to look forward. Sad to say, but you can't change what happened. Life, despite it's certain cruelties, goes on. You can't stop living because of a loss of a beloved one. I thought of my sister. What would she want me to do? She loved me so much she wouldn't want me to stop enjoying my life. You have to appreciate to have the chance to have the possibility to enjoy your life furthermore. It's a horrible period a loving person has to experience. Nevertheless, we have to accept it as part of our life. I can only recommend you to seek professional help if you can't see any betterment. They can help you process your thoughts and feelings. You can talk anything off your chest. I mean if you really loved what you lost, it won't stop hurting. Nevertheless, you have to try to transform all the wonderful memories in positive power. Don't stop enjoying your life! Your beloved one would ask you to do so!
7/2/2012 7:14:44 PM
I am grateful to read that you shouldn't try to be a superhero while grieving. I felt really guilty, and still kind of do, over the severe grief I felt when my mom passed. I feel like going through the loss made me absent in others' lives, and now I am re-thinking it.
If there was ever a time I could not be a superhero it was most definitely when I lost my mom. Thanks Mr Anderson for this article!!!
This summer has been full of grief and loss for me. Mama died right before Memorial Day, then Daddy had a stroke and ended up in the nursing home. I feel like I have done well with the grief letting the tears flow when they appear (unless I'm driving). Even though I know Mama is in a much better place, I still miss her and that I think is mostly what makes me sad, but it also makes me want to do something which is why I joined the Walk to End Alzheimer's, the disease that stole my mama from us.
This is a really good article. So glad to see you mention that there is no wrong way to grieve and no right timetable.
My husband died suddenly 3+ years ago - when he was 47 and I was 42 - leaving me to bring up our 2 small children myself. I have experienced alot of what you mention, as well as a lot of what people mention in their comments. Everything from all the stages/feeling mentioned to wondering - and being angry about - why my beautiful marriage to my healthy, fit husband had to die with a sudden heart attack and other marriages - especially those including unhealthy, unfit spouses or arguing unhappy spouses - get to go on.
And you do have to deal with your feelings. And it takes as long as it takes. I have no problem with articles and discussions of the feelings or even stages. Its when someone tells you a timetable that I find it hard.
And I really think Coach Dean gave a wonderful discussion and wonderful advice. I will save this one for future reference - while I still grieve, for when I grieve the new losses I am sure will come in my life, and for when my friends and family could use some good words.
I lost my husband 39 years ago at age 48 and at that time I was only the second widow in our small bedroom community church. Fortunately, they wrapped their arms around me and my two teen age children. Our pastor at the time realized that many were having problems with death and grieving so he conducted a death and dying class. He asked me if I would be willing to participant and to this day I am so glad I did as it really helped me and the others through the process of loss and grieving.
I'm glad SP / Coach Dean is putting helpful info for all to read. There is such a lack of helpful info for those dealing with grief to find support. -- So many suffer in silence because the general populace seem to think 6 weeks in general is enough time to "get on with your life". Get real!
It's too bad that grieving people sometimes feel like they have to hide away because others have no idea how to deal with another's pain.
Wonderful book resource: "Tear Soup" by Pat Schweibert, Chuck DeKlyen, Taylor Bills, and Pat Schwiebert. It helps for all ages & stages. Very useful info & support.
it is a good point to remember that we all grieve at our own pace and there is no right or wrong way to feel When my brother died at 28, I was broken up and so sad. I can remember seeing a drug addict walking the streets and wondering why God left this soul to walk the earth yet allowed my brother to die and leave a wife with two small children to care for on her own. That was a turning point for me as I realised how bitter and angry I was and I had to move on to acceptance. He was gone and he was not coming back.
This perpetuates the unscientific, outdated idea that there are stages of grieving.
Although Kübler-Ross, the doctor who proposed the idea of the "stages", contributed immensely to the understanding of grief, her ideas have since been under challenge through extensive studies, and her ideas about aspects of grieving have been taken out of context and greatly distorted. In fact, her stages originally applied to people who were DYING, not grieving, and were based on anecdotal evidence, not studies.
Using weasel words like "experts who study" is misleading. Which experts? What studies? The Yale Bereavement Study, even aiming to *confirm* the stages, found that they were ordered improperly, and didn't find evidence of some of the stages. George Bonanno, professor of clinical psychology at Columbia University, calls for scientifically supported information to replace that of unsupported theories popular with laypeople, and has stated that two decades of rigorous scientific studies do not support the "stages of grief". The APA published a book called "Meaning Reconstruction & the Experience of Loss" which debunked the notion of a series of stages of grief and placed emphasis on treating an individual's unique way of dealing with grief, in 2001.
Perpetuating the idea that there is a specific progression is harmful to those who may be grieving, because it is certainly true that there is no wrong way to grieve, and many people will never experience most of the supposed stages they're expected to go through. Thinking that they are not grieving "normally" is yet another stressor to add to a difficult time.
Dean, I always find your articles insightful, but you've outdone yourself this time! (I hope one of your goals is to write a book or have your own TV show at some point. I'd be first in line to buy/watch.)
I've done considerable reading about the grieving process, beginning back in 1981 or so, when I was first dealing with the emotions of having been diagnosed with a chronic illness.
What I've learned has helped me cope with many--and many different kinds of--losses since then. And of course it's all helped me support others when they were faced with losses.
Most of your article served chiefly as a concise review of what I'd already learned either from reading or through experience. But one element was new to me, and I expect that it will prove to be a hugely helpful perspective.
The initial stage (denial/numbness) has always been easy for me to view as essentially adaptive/protective. But until reading your article today, I had never thought about how the *other* stages might also be not just necessary evils, but actually adaptive--that is, involving "things [we] need to do to provide [ourselves] with the same open, compassionate, and supportive response [we'd] like to provide to others when something bad happens to them"--for example, that anger isn't just a stage to get through, or even just a natural response, but may actually be *helpful* in keeping us from "being overwhelmed by debilitating feelings like helplessness and powerlessness" (a tendency that painful experience has taught me that I must vigilantly guard against if I don't want to wind up clinically depressed).
Thanks so much for all you contribute to the SP community. And thanks especially for this piece.
A very timely article, indeed! I read it sometime last year, but it really hit home today. Two high school seniors in our town were in a car accident a week ago during a storm. One boy only lived a few days. Today was his funeral. There are a lot of grieving people around here.
Also, tomorrow will be the 2cd anniversary of my Mom's death. I've been mopey for days. Thanks, Dean, for a much-needed reminder that this is normal!
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