When someone important to you dies it can feel like the end of the world. You may think nothing will ever be the same again.
Image credit: Anthony Tran, Unsplash
You may feel angry because everyone seems to be carrying on as usual while your world has changed beyond recognition – why are the binmen joking around? Why is my teacher whistling? Don't they know what's happened?
You may be raging at the injustice of it all – how could this wonderful, special person be allowed to die?
You may feel resentment towards those who haven’t lost somebody – how could he or she ever understand? They’ve still got their mum/dad/brother/sister/gran.
You may feel anxious about what happens next – who will look after me? How will the bills be paid? Will my schoolmates act weird around me?
You may feel a million different things. And then, at other times, you may just feel numb.
Whatever you’re feeling, these are probably feelings you’ve never experienced before, or never experienced as strongly, and all of these feelings together are called grief.
Grief can feel like some, all or a mixture of the following emotions:
Nobody's grief is the same
No two people grieve in exactly the same way. When somebody dies, everyone who knew the person will be affected by their death differently, as each one of them will have had a different relationship with them. So while all those affected may share some of the same emotions, such as shock, sadness and anger, each person’s grief will be as unique as their fingerprint. Some people will recover quickly, some more slowly and some will be changed forever.
Image credit, left: Tess, Unsplash. Image credit, right: Anton Darius @theSollers, Unsplash
What is normal when you're grieving?
There IS no normal
When will I feel better?
It might seem impossible to believe, but in time the pain you are feeling will lessen as you adjust to your loss. How long this takes depends on many different things. Some people might start to feel better in months or even weeks, others will take much longer.
However desperately sad you feel, do believe that in time your sadness, anger, pain and depression will become easier to bear, and going about your daily activities won't be such a struggle anymore. Getting to this point can be difficult at times, but don’t give up.
Looking after yourself after loss - Woodside Bereavement Service
Children and young people share their coping tips - Cruse Bereavement Care
Coping with bereavement - NHS Moodzone