How to Cope With the Death of a Family Member

Grief is a highly personal experience. Losing someone you love is incredibly upsetting, and everyone reacts differently. Unfortunately, the loss of loved ones is something we must all experience at some stage in our lives. You may feel denial that they have passed away, anger that they have been taken away from you, and extreme feelings of sadness. The loss of a family member is harrowing if you spent a significant amount of time with the individual. There are a couple of things you can do to help you cope with the loss.

Recognise your emotions.

To cope with the loss of a loved one, you may find yourself denying your emotions in an attempt to reduce the pain you are feeling. However, refusing to acknowledge what has happened or suppressing how you are truly feeling could lead to problems. Suppressed grief can lead to uncontrollable anger, anxiety, and sometimes substance abuse. Certain situations can make processing someone’s death even more complicated. For example, those who lose relatives in traumatic situations may find that they experience severe shock.

Remember that is it OK to feel upset, angry, shocked, devastated, or confused by the death of someone close to you. Try not to judge yourself for reacting in a certain way – we all process loss differently.

Talk to others.

Some find it hard to talk to family and friends after someone they love dies. You may worry that you will upset someone who is also grieving, or you might not like people seeing you cry. Talking to others is an important step in the grieving process, and we encourage you to talk to someone you trust about how you’re feeling. While those around you may not be able to offer advice to directly help you, the process of speaking your feelings will be healing. If you don’t feel ready to talk to someone about your loss, take your time. There is no pressure to talk about it immediately.

Write it down.

If you aren’t quite ready to talk to someone about your grief, you might find that keeping a journal helps. Journalling is a good coping skill for a range of situations – those with struggling with anxiety, depression, trauma, bereavement and more have found it a useful exercise. The action of writing allows you to take a closer look at how you are feeling and may help you combat denial and avoidance.

Pay your respects.

Attending the funeral of your loved one will allow you to pay your respects to your beloved family member. Many find the idea of a funeral unsettling and may feel fearful about attending. A funeral helps you to acknowledge that someone has died, and allows you to reflect on the important moments that you shared with the deceased individual.

If you need assistance organising a funeral, click here for more information or call us on 0208 819 3469. A member of the Funerals on a Budget team will help you organise a meaningful but affordable funeral.

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