Dealing with Bereavement and Grief: Where to Turn for Help
Bereavement and grief can be difficult to process, and it can often feel like you are alone in the world. If you, or someone you love, is struggling with grief, this blog will help to explain the process and outline where to turn for help.
What is grief?
Grief is a normal and natural response to a loss, and an individual experience that can manifest in different ways. It can involve strong emotions such as sadness, anger, guilt, and fear, and involve physical symptoms like fatigue, sleeplessness, changes in appetite, and body aches. It is important to remember that there is no right or wrong way to grieve; it is a unique and personal journey.
The stages of grief
Grieving is a process that is unique to each individual. However, it is generally accepted that there are five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. When dealing with bereavement and grief, it is important to recognise these stages and understand that each of them are a normal part of the healing process.
Denial can manifest in various ways, such as not believing that a loved one has died or refusing to accept that this has happened.
Anger can be directed at yourself, the deceased or other people in your life, as it can feel incredibly unfair to have experienced such a loss.
Bargaining. It is natural to want to make a deal to have your loved one back, or to have the situation reversed. It can feel like an attempt to regain control over the situation.
Depression. You may find yourself feeling overwhelmed by sadness and regret, unable to process the emotions you are experiencing. You may feel hopeless and lost, as if nothing will ever be the same again.
Acceptance. This does not necessarily mean that you are no longer sad or miss your loved one, but rather that you have come to terms with the fact that they are gone.
Where to turn for help
Speaking with a therapist or counsellor can help you process your feelings and cope with the loss in a healthy way. For example, Cruse offers a helpline and online chat, available 365 days a year. The Government website outlines other support resources on their website.