Loss comes in all shapes and sizes and it guides us through our lives, but it can be incredibly tough to go through. So, how do you deal with loss?

When do you grieve?

People often think that you only grieve when someone has passed away, but did you know that moving house is one of the most stressful events of people’s lives? After all, you say goodbye to your familiar environment and the many memories you might have there. New phases of life are often accompanied by loss and each loss requires its own grieving process. So, you don’t just grieve after the death of a loved one, but also:

  • After a break-up (a broken heart is also a type of grief).
  • After certain stages of life, think of leaving your high school to go to university, moving or starting a new job.
  • If you change workplaces, especially if it wasn’t your decision or if you retire after years of working
  • When ending a friendship
  • When a loved one dies, that can be a miscarriage, the death of your pet or someone you dearly loved

What is grief?

Technically, grief is the emotional stress you experience when you lose something or someone. It is a universal phenomenon and part of our lives – just like other emotions such as happiness, anger or fear. Grief can be found in all cultures, but how it is expressed differs per group. This may also include certain traditions. For some religion plays a major role, for others it is mainly about grieving in a group, or it is something you do alone. Think about it, how is loss handled in your family, or within your religious or cultural community?

How do you grieve?

First, I want to clarify that there is no right way of grieving; this is an individual process. However, these things might be able to help you: 

  • Try to make this experience part of your life story; if you’ve had such intense feelings for something that you’re going to grieve it’s loss, it’s unrealistic to expect that you’ll just “get over it” and forget it. The loss will always be a part of your life; try to think about what place the loss will have in your life. This also applies to people who have died; how do you want to remember them?
  • Everything hits harder for people who are grieving; so don’t be afraid to cancel your plans at the last minute if you feel that’s needed. Ask for space or help if you need it, don’t plan too much and inform your school or work about what you’re going through. Allow yourself some space and time to deal with the proces.
  • There is no ideal time frame, no guide to grieving and no defined time frame or predefined steps to go through. Sometimes it will feel very heavy and other times it will feel lighter, everything is fine.
  • It’s an individual process, so don’t compare yourself to others. Others express their feelings differently, so really listen to yourself. There is no right or wrong, try to find your own way and above all listen to what you need.

Professional help

Grieving loss is something that is completely natural and that everyone is going to experience at least once in their life. Try to stay close to yourself, there is no right or wrong. Ask for support, but also space when you need it. Are you currently going through a period of mourning and would you like to get professional help with this? Go to your GP for a referral, or click here for more information about a treatment via NiceDay.

Want to read more about mourning? Then click here.

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Lea Jabbarian

My name is Lea Jabbarian and I am a psychologist, teacher and scientist. It is important to me that a patient feels unconditionally accepted during the treatment and that we shape the therapy together.

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