Dealing with the Loss of a Loved One – How to Cope

One of the most challenging things we have to go through in this lifetime is the loss of someone we love. It doesn’t matter if it’s a parent, a child, a sibling, or a spouse or life partner – the loss is the same throughout. They say that time heals all wounds, and whilst we agree, there is a point when the wound feels all too raw, particularly if you just lost your loved one or the loss was unexpected. So how do we cope, and how do we deal with the loss? Although there is nothing anyone can do to bring them back, there are still some significant ways through which you can cope.

Symptoms associated with bereavement or loss

The first thing you have to remember is that in bereavement or loss, there is no right or wrong way in experiencing it, as confirmed by funeral directors in Leeds from, who know very well the feelings and symptoms accompanying it. The fact of the matter is that grief and loss affect all of us in different ways. The way through which you experience grief may be quite different from the way another person experiences it. But there are symptoms in general that we must be aware of, as these symptoms are seen by most.

These include:

  • Numbness and shock. In most cases, this is the first feeling we have when we lose someone – there is an overwhelming feeling of numbness, just as you would feel if you were “in a daze”. We have all been through this, feeling like it is not happening to us but to another person.
  • It is also common to feel deep sadness, accompanied by bouts of crying.
  • Some people also experience exhaustion or tiredness, even if they’ve had enough rest.
  • A feeling of anger is common, be it anger geared towards the person you’ve lost or anger for the reason you lost that person.
  • There is also a feeling of guilt, which comes in different forms – guilt for not being able to help your loved one or prevent them from dying, guilt about what you did not say (or say), or guilt about your feelings of anger.

It may be possible not to feel them all the time or to feel them in stages, and sometimes they can come unexpectedly as well.

What you can do

There are many things you can do, fortunately. You can, for instance, try talking about it with a family member or a friend or going to a counsellor who can help you sort through your feelings. By talking to someone we trust, we can let it out and not suppress it, allowing us to process it more easily. You should also try to get more sleep if you’re having trouble sleeping and do things that make you happy, such as spending time with your kids or grandkids, gardening, cooking, or trying out a new hobby. The point is to tell yourself that you are not alone – there are ways you can get the support you need after a loss. It’s also important not to do it all at once – give yourself time to breathe, and remember that whilst it’s impossible to change the situation, your energy and time should be spent on getting better – as it’s what your loved one would have wanted you to do.

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