Grief is defined as deep sorrow, especially that that is caused by someone’s death. It is often misunderstood and can be very traumatic, even in instances where you expected the loss to occur. Many people do not understand the grief, or the trauma associated with it, but both are very real. Here are the seven stages of grief that will hopefully give you clarity on this very important issue.
SHOCK & DENIAL- You will probably react to learning of the loss with disbelief. You may deny the reality of the loss at some level, in order to avoid the pain. Shock provides emotional protection from being overwhelmed all at once.
PAIN & GUILT- As the shock wears off, it is replaced with the suffering of unbelievable. excruciating, and seemingly unbearable pain. You may also experience guilty feelings or remorse over things you did or didn’t do with your loved one.
ANGER & BARGAINING- Frustration gives way to anger, and you may lash out and lay unwarranted blame for the death or lost experiences on someone else. You may ask God” Why me?” You may also try to bargain with your God (“I will never drink again if you just bring him back”)
“DEPRESSION”, REFLECTION, LONELINESS- Just when your friends may think you should be getting on with your life, a long period of sad reflection will likely overtake you. You may isolate yourself on purpose, reflect on things you did with your lost one, and focus on memories of the past. You may also sense feelings of emptiness or despair.
THE UPWARD TURN- As you start to adjust to life without your loved one, your life becomes a little calmer and more organized. Your physical symptoms lessen, and your “depression” begins to lift slightly.
RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH- As you become more functional, your mind starts working again, and you will find yourself seeking realistic solutions to problems posed by life without your loved one. You will start to work on practical and financial problems and reconstructing yourself and your life without him or her.
ACCEPTANCE & HOPE- During this, the last of the seven stages in this grief model, you learn to accept and deal with the reality of your situation. Acceptance does not necessarily mean instant happiness. Given the pain and turmoil you have experienced, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled YOU that existed before this tragedy. But you will find a way forward.
The trauma associated with grief is often overwhelming. For help with managing your grief, please contact us at 844 MY TECH TALK.