Ami Shroyer: Facts and Tips in Coping with Grief and Loss
We are mortal beings passing into this world, and when we lose someone we love, we undergo the process of grieving. When it comes to death and dying, grief has five stages including denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Remember that not all people in grief experience the five stages, there are some who will report more stages, and others have their own set of grieving stages because it is a unique experience. The first stage of grief is denial, wherein the world becomes overwhelming and meaningless, leaving someone in the state of shock. This is the stage when a person feels numb, and not seeing how he can move on with life. The denial stage serves as your protection form your inner violent thoughts and emotions, but as you become stronger and ready to face them, denial will start to fade.
It is acceptable to feel anger after the denial stage, and this is a normal element of the grief’s healing process. You may feel endless anger because of the pain and you are free to show it by crying or shouting. The anger stage may also involve blaming other people, yourself, and even God for losing your loved one, and this is a normal feeling of a person who is in grief. With the pain caused by a loved one’s loss, we may feel deserted and abandoned. Anger can give you a temporary structure to the denial stage’s nothingness, giving you an anchor, and a bridge to the open sea, and this is evidenced when you start blaming and getting angry to other people. The anger stage shows how intensity your love is to your loved one. The third stage is the bargaining stage, and before the loss, a person seems like to do anything to spare their loved one’s life. There are many “what if” statements in the bargaining stage and this stage may last for weeks or months, and the person may blame himself for his loved one’s death. The guilt inside you leads to self-blame, remembering the past and wondering if things got much better when you have done something better.
The depressive stage seems to last forever, this is accepting the reality that you have lost your loved one and his life will no longer be restored. While there are some people who become stuck in the depressive stage, you have to understand that this is a normal response of a person who is greatly grieving. A person may retract completely from his social circle in the depressive stage, but as soon as he talks about it and begins to socialize again, a grieving person starts to enter the acceptance stage.