Grief is a journey compiled of different emotions that can be overwhelming at times. Everyone copes with grief in a different way and that is okay. Sometimes words of support from family and friends simply do not feel like enough to help us through the process. When these times arise, it can be helpful to turn to outside grief support resources. We have compiled supportive information on our website regarding grief and healing. Here you can find helpful grief support resources, as well as 365 days of grief support sent to you by email each day.
There are typically five stages to the grieving process and navigating them can be challenging without support. Not everyone will go through their grief in the same order. Some may go through a stage more than once or not at all and some may go through stages for longer periods of time than others. There is no right or wrong way to grieve.
Typically, grief starts with denial and shock of the loss. Although the loss is real, and you know that, it still feels unbelievable. Some people may also become physically ill due to the initial shock of the loss. Once the reality of the loss has set in, guilt along with pain of the death may set in. This is the stage where the thought of “if only” may fill your thoughts. This stage of grieving brings about much sadness and pain. After the feeling of guilt begins to subside, some people may experience a stage of anger and bargaining. It can be difficult for others to be understanding during this phase as anger can present itself at any time and for any reason. Bargaining can also occur during this time of grief. Some people may find themselves bargaining, or “making a deal” with God. The last stage of grief, depression and loneliness, can be one of the most difficult and dangerous phases of the grieving process. Emotions are very raw during this phase and some people may start noticing behavioral changes in eating and sleeping, and they may begin to isolate themselves and withdraw from interacting with others.
There are healthy and unhealthy ways to grieve and knowing the difference is necessary and important. Remember to take time to grieve in your own way, but do not be afraid to get help if you need it. Take time to work on yourself while grieving a loss. Spending time outside or with friends and family can be great distractions from the grief and serve as reminders of just how precious and beautiful life is. Visit the links above to learn more about the grieving process and to find support for you or for someone you may know that is in need of some gentle guidance.