FOR THE BEREAVED: We grieve many things

When the word grief comes to mind, most of us automatically link it to the death of a loved one.

The loss of a loved one is obviously one of the most life-altering and painful events of one’s life, which explains why it is associated with loss, but it is not the only thing we can associate with grief.

In truth, we grieve for many other life-altering events that seem trivial when discussing death but they are life altering in their own right.

For instance, when two people divorce or separate from each other, the grieving process usually starts before the end of the relationship.

Anticipatory grief begins when it becomes apparent the relationship is ending and moves into acute grief when the relationship is severed.

For some, the loss of a relationship involves feelings of denial, fear, bitterness, depression and hopefully, in the end, acceptance. The process must play itself through before those involved are able to fully move forward.

The loss of our job is at the top of the list when we talk about life-altering events.

We may feel we have been treated unfairly, or harbour other negative feelings towards the events that lead to our leaving or being asked to leave.

We not only leave a paycheque but also important friends and relationships we may have developed over time – it is a time of unknowns.

Some of us consider our work mates extended family of sorts and we grieve the sudden loss of contact and connectedness. After all, we tend to spend more time in a day with co-workers than we do with loved ones.

As we age, we suffer other events that cause grief that may not be easily understood by those who are younger.

A senior who has not been able to renew their driver’s license may grieve their loss of independence.

There are other life-altering events such as the inability to live safely independently, the loss of mobility, the loss of hearing or sight.

It may not occur to some of those close to us that this is a grieving time as well as an adjustment period and they may feel perplexed or impatient with the one grieving.

Be gentle to those around you who are moving through change in their lives.

My mother has an old saying that we use often in our family, “Less said, best mended” and I think in a lot of situations, it is just right.

We sometimes try to make things better for our loved ones by offering well-meaning advice or suggestions but there are some things in life that we just have to work through and process ourselves.

Less said doesn’t mean less support, it just means that we will most likely save ourselves from giving those “pearls of wisdom” that the other isn’t ready to hear just yet, thus avoiding hurt or resentful feelings.

–Barbara Bleiler is an advertising representative for the Grand Forks Gazette and a certified funeral celebrant

Just Posted

BM&TS show ‘a tale as old as time’

The theatre group produced Beauty and the Beast.

Video: MP hears pot, pipeline and politics concerns

South Okanagan-West Kootenay MP hosts town hall forum in Penticton

Needles killer frightened many in our town: BC author

Roy Bugera disrupted life in a quiet Vancouver Island village before moving to Arrow Lakes

RCMP investigate stabbing incident

Injuries were non-life threatening, RCMP report

Health Minister says coming changes will make difference in rural communities.

“As a government, Premier Horgan is committed to improving the ambulance service.”

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Golden Knights win 4-1, remain undefeated against Canucks

Vegas gets points from 12 players in dominating effort versus Vancouver

Alberta budget plans for Trans Mountain expansion

Finance Minister Joe Ceci says expected revenues will be factored into budget forecasts

Proposed gun bill attacked by gun owners and shooting victims

The federal government tabled the bill today in order to tighten the sale and tracking of firearms

New anti-radicalization centre in the works for B.C.

Centre aims to help ‘vulnerable individuals on the path to radicalization’ before they turn to crime

B.C. bravery, public service honoured by Governor General Julie Payette

UVic basketball coach Kathryn Shields inducted into Order of Canada

Sea lion with rope wrapped around neck saved by Vancouver Aquarium

Steller sea lions are a species of special concern and some populations are endangered in parts of Alaska

Most Read