Let's Talk About Grief & The Long Term Effects Of Losing A Loved One

Sunday marked the 7 year anniversary of my mum passing away. It's hard to believe it's been that long and this post has been in the works for a really long time. Talking about grief, in general, is difficult but it's even harder to do online as it's so easy for things to get misconstrued. But I think it's something that is so important to talk about as sadly at some point we all go through grief. And sometimes you just need to know that you're not alone in the process. I know today isn't quite like my usual content but I hope that there is at least one person who can take something away from this. 


I truly believe going through grief is one of the most personal things that we can deal with and it's so difficult. And everyone surrounding you wants to try and give you advice on how to cope and it's all too easy to feel like you should be doing it a certain way when you have to find your own process. Some might choose to share the way they're feeling with their loved ones and cry it out and some are very private with how they're coping. Often people seek a lot of comfort either going to counselling or support groups and it's awesome that there are such things available but if those things aren't for you there are so many other things you can do. Our minds are so powerful and more often than not they guide us in the right direction to find the process that works for us.


A thought that still gets to me today is that I should be 'over my grief' by now which when said out loud sounds pretty silly. And of course, my own grieving process is so far away from how I felt on the day that my mum passed but there are plenty of days where I still feel super sad. Losing a loved one whether it's a parent, partner or friend is life changing in every possible way and it's completely normal to feel sad about it no matter how much time has passed. And even when you know you can't talk to them and ask their opinions you're bound to still want them there. It's so easy to feel the pressure to deal with things instantly but like most things in life grieving is a long process and that's ok. 


If there is one thing that I really wish I'd known for the immediate years after my mum passing is that grief comes in spells. You can go for days and weeks and feel ok and then all of a sudden it will hit you and you won't. And it's completely normal and it doesn't mean you're going backwards in your grieving process. And embracing those feelings are so important, batting them away might work in the short-term but letting yourself feel whatever you're feeling in any type of situation is vital. We live in a society where we constantly bombarded with things like 'good vibes only' and that there is always good to be found in any situation. And for the most part, I do subscribe to good vibes only when the bad ones aren't necessary at all. But feeling sad is just as normal as feeling happy, being on top of the world 24/7 isn't normal and it's not a realistic image to portray. And we don't always need a reason to feel low, sometimes it's just how we feel. 

don't compare your process to anyone elses

Finding someone we can relate to is a pretty common practice in any area of your life but especially when it comes to grieving. Of course, we want to know that we're not alone in the way that we feel but by doing this it's all too easy to fall into a comparison cycle. Comparing yourself to anyone else in any area of your life is a dangerous habit to get into but it's, even more, detremental when it comes to something as personal as grief. We all have our own processes that we go through in our own way and our own time and adopting someone else's way of coping with something might work in the short-term. But in the long run, you're the only one who knows what is truly right for you. 


Grief is a hard topic to discuss. There is absolutely no denying that and of course, it's bound to make people feel a little uncomfortable but talking about it with your loved ones is so important. If people get irritated or annoyed that you're trying to talk about they're probably not the best people to have in your life anyway. Talking about things and getting them off your mind can be so helpful when dealing with something as difficult as grief. And more often than not even though it doesn't change anything but it can make such a difference to the way you feel mentally and physically. We all carry such heavy loads in life and sharing them with even just one person can make it so much easier. 


Do you have thoughts on dealing with grief in the long term?

R x

Check out: Madolyn Thinks

Rebecca WarrinerPersonal