No one else will grieve in exactly the same way you do. When you turn to others for help, don’t let them tell you what you should or should not feel.
Talking about your grief will help you heal. Find others who will allow you to talk as much as you want or as often as you want about your grief.
Confusion, feeling “lost”, fear, guilt and relief are just a few of the emotions you might feel as part of your grief. Others may tell you that feeling certain things, like anger, are wrong. Don’t take these to heart. Instead, find listeners who will accept your feelings without conditions.
You feelings of loss and sadness will probably leave you feeling tired. Respect what your body and mind are telling you. Get rest every day. Eat balanced meals. Don’t allow others to push you into doing things that you don’t feel ready to do.
Sometimes, you may be suddenly distracted and preoccupied by your grief. This can be distressing, but it is normal. Find someone who understands and will let you talk about it.
The funeral or other such ritual does more than acknowledge the death of someone you cared about. It gives you the support of caring people and it is a way for you to mourn. If others tell you that these rituals are not necessary, do what feels best for you. If you choose not to take part in a ritual and are feeling pressured to do so, know that you should do what feels right for you.
Griefbursts are sudden, unexpected feelings of sadness that just hit sometimes, even long after death. These feelings can be very strong and even scary. When this happens you might feel afraid to be alone
But it’s O.K. if you don’t find an answer. “Why” questions about life and death are the hardest questions in the world.
You might feel grumpy and have trouble getting along with others sometimes.
Sometimes those memories will be happy and sometimes they might be sad. Either way, these memories help you keep alive your love for the person who died. You’ll always miss them.
Adapted from Alan D. Wolfelt, “The Grieving Person’s Bill of Rights” and Alan D. Wolfelt “Healing the Bereaved Child.”