You might experience all kinds of difficult and at times overwhelming emotions, and you might sometimes wonder if the sadness will ever end. This is a normal reaction to loss.
There is no right or wrong way to grieve but it can help to allow yourself to grieve, share your grief, and let others support you. In time you will learn to live with your loss, heal and move forward in new and different ways.
Allow yourself to grieve and heal
• Grieve your way. No one can tell you how to feel.
• Understand that grief takes time. Expect that you will sometimes find yourself surprised by how you are feeling.
• Express how you feel to someone you trust. Talk using words that are comfortable and have meaning to you and don’t be afraid to share your emotions; your tears, anger, relief etc.
• Honour your loss. It might be by writing a journal of memories, writing letters, treasuring precious possessions, planting a tree, writing a song; whatever feels meaningful to you.
• Be prepared for difficult events that trigger your memories and sadness. This may happen on anniversaries, birthdays, reunions or perhaps when you see particular reminders of what you have lost.
• Take one step at a time. Know that there will be setbacks but that you will heal in time.
How can I help you?
I have worked with many clients who have grieved the loss of a relationship or death of a loved one. Often, these clients would ask, “when will I be over this pain?” Recognizing that grieving is a challenging process, the feelings that accompany grief are an essential part of the experience. The grieving process and the emotions that accompany it help us come to terms with the loss and learn to integrate the meaning of the loss into our lives.
It can be validating to see elements that mirror our situation in the writing of others. Worden (1991) created Four Tasks of Grieving in order to help provide a framework for the grieving process. This model is flexible, meaning that you can adapt it to describe your situation. With all models, it is possible to move backward and forward in them, and for someone to encompass aspects of more than one stage. It is important to note that grieving is an individual process and there is no right or wrong way to experience it. As always, I empower clients to use this material in a way that is helpful to them.
  1. To accept the reality of the loss. 
  2. To work through the pain of grief. 
  3. To adjust to a world without the deceased (or relationship). 
  4. To find an enduring connection with the deceased (or relationship) in the midst of embarking on a new life.