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Embracing Grief Series (2)

Published on August 11, 2009

tragedycont…(from Janet Eells)

At first there is simply numbing shock and the denial that the loved one is really gone.  “No.  It can’t be true.”  Probably the shock and numbness carried you through the difficult days of the funeral when family and friends gathered around to help.  Their support was needed, for most of us were acting mechanically – going through the motions in a daze.  We probably were unable to drive safely, to make reasonable decisions, or sometimes even to take care of the simple necessities of living.  Or we may have appeared to be functioning calmly because full realization of the loss had not yet sunk in.  The numbed state may continue for days or weeks, but eventually it gives way to some kind of emotional release.  Finally you were able to cry if you had not done so before.   Those who are able to cry or whose families encourage them to do so are are fortunate.  One of the worst things a person can do is to urge a bereaved person to “be brave.” you have experienced a devastating loss and will never again be the same person you were before.  To deny the pain of this is to store up serious physical and emotional problems for the future.

tbc…

Please, if you know someone who lost a loved one, DO NOT try to give advice or explain away the tragedy.  Often times, things you think are appropriate to say like “Everything is going to be alright,” or “There’s a reason for everything,” are the last things the grieving want to hear.   A better way to approach the situation is simply to be present, or if you can’t, just let them know that you’re available.  Be a blessing by being there as a supporter not as a super Christian!  I’m sure your intention is genuine but at this stage it’ll be hard to decipher through to acknowledge it.

Author: JD

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