There are five stages of grief; denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.
While people you meet may say this is the way you are supposed to handle grief, the truth is, it doesn’t have to be. Everyone handles grief in different ways, and there is no wrong way or right way. However, there is ways to deal with all kinds of anger, sadness, or guilt one might feel following the loss of a loved one. The number one way to cope is to get support. To do this, consider joining a support group, for grief can get very lonely, and it is very helpful to be around people who truly understand and are going through the exact same thing. If you don’t do well in a group setting however, consider getting a short-term therapist or grief counselor. A therapist can help you work through overwhelming emotions that seem too much to deal with on your own.
Another way to cope with this is to take care of yourself. First and foremost, make sure you are healthy physically. It would do any good if you don’t eat or sleep for weeks. Try not to use alcohol or substances as a coping mechanism. That just makes things worse. Also, express your feelings in a way that is comfortable for you. Writing a letter to a lost loved one, writing in your journal, making a scrapbook, and collecting photos for a photo album are all healthy ways to get your feels out in a creative way. Lastly, plan ahead for triggering days, because there will be some, whether it be a birthday or Christmas. Just know that all these feelings are completely normal, and get a plan together with your relatives to honor your loved ones memory in a safe and respectful way. When you apply these skills to your grief, you may feel a bit better about yourself and more at peace at the world.