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The private grief world


DWS

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1 hour ago, DWS said:

Do you feel you are in your own private grief world?

I think every human being is in a sense in their own world, grieving or otherwise. There's only one consciousness per body. When we lose someone, that becomes a "grief world" as you say.

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Do you have others who understand that and who sincerely respect it? 

I don't think anyone really understands it until they go through it, but some at least get that it exists and respect/feel bad about it. But honestly, no, I don't feel like I really ever had that. When I lost my beloved, nobody checked up on me or said "call if you want to talk" etc. I had more "privacy" than I'd wish on anyone.

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19 minutes ago, HisMunchkin said:

I take it to mean that it feels like no one else I know seem to understand the depth of the grief I feel, because no one else had a closer relationship to my husband than me at the time of his illness and eventual passing (or for the past 25 years, for that matter).  No one else, aside from various doctors and nurses, witnessed what he went through when he had really bad treatment side effects, or how he suffered and deteriorated near the end.  Then when I hear things like, "Look on the bright side!", I am certain that they have no idea how I feel.  Not even close.  This makes me feel very alone, and that loneliness is what makes me feel like I'm in my own private grief world.  

Exactly, same here on all counts. 

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49 minutes ago, DWS said:

This is a video that I found early in my online grief travels. It still hits me hard but soothes too....

This is such a good video!  I have saved it.  

This is such a good thread!  Everyone's comments...I so agree.

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1 hour ago, weswej said:

I'm just over the two years ago mark in my grief life.

I am so sorry for your loss.  This is a good place to read and post and find others going through similar in their grief journeys.

We call it a journey even if we aren't going anywhere with it. ;) 

Grief Process

This is not a one-size-fits-all, what strikes us one day will be different a few months/years from now, so please save/print this for reference!

I want to share an article I wrote of the things I've found helpful over the years, in the hopes something will be of help to you either now or on down the road.

TIPS TO MAKE YOUR WAY THROUGH GRIEF

There's no way to sum up how to go on in a simple easy answer, but I encourage you to read the other threads here, little by little you will learn how to make your way through this.  I do want to give you some pointers though, of some things I've learned on my journey.

  • Take one day at a time.  The Bible says each day has enough trouble of its own, I've found that to be true, so don't bite off more than you can chew.  It can be challenging enough just to tackle today.  I tell myself, I only have to get through today.  Then I get up tomorrow and do it all over again.  To think about the "rest of my life" invites anxiety.
  • Don't be afraid, grief may not end but it evolves.  The intensity lessens eventually.
  • Visit your doctor.  Tell them about your loss, any troubles sleeping, suicidal thoughts, anxiety attacks.  They need to know these things in order to help you through it...this is all part of grief.
  • Suicidal thoughts are common in early grief.  If they're reoccurring, call a suicide hotline.  I felt that way early on, but then realized it wasn't that I wanted to die so much as I didn't want to go through what I'd have to face if I lived.  Back to taking a day at a time.  Suicide Hotline - Call 1-800-273-8255 or www.crisis textline.org or US and Canada: text 741741 UK: text 85258 | Ireland: text 50808
  • Give yourself permission to smile.  It is not our grief that binds us to them, but our love, and that continues still.
  • Try not to isolate too much.  
  • There's a balance to reach between taking time to process our grief, and avoiding it...it's good to find that balance for yourself.  We can't keep so busy as to avoid our grief, it has a way of haunting us, finding us, and demanding we pay attention to it!  Some people set aside time every day to grieve.  I didn't have to, it searched and found me!
  • Self-care is extremely important, more so than ever.  That person that would have cared for you is gone, now you're it...learn to be your own best friend, your own advocate, practice self-care.  You'll need it more than ever.
  • Recognize that your doctor isn't trained in grief, find a professional grief counselor that is.  We need help finding ourselves through this maze of grief, knowing where to start, etc.  They have not only the knowledge, but the resources.
  • In time, consider a grief support group.  If your friends have not been through it themselves, they may not understand what you're going through, it helps to find someone somewhere who DOES "get it". 
  • Be patient, give yourself time.  There's no hurry or timetable about cleaning out belongings, etc.  They can wait, you can take a year, ten years, or never deal with it.  It's okay, it's what YOU are comfortable with that matters.  
  • Know that what we are comfortable with may change from time to time.  That first couple of years I put his pictures up, took them down, up, down, depending on whether it made me feel better or worse.  Finally, they were up to stay.
  • Consider a pet.  Not everyone is a pet fan, but I've found that my dog helps immensely.  It's someone to love, someone to come home to, someone happy to see me, someone that gives me a purpose...I have to come home and feed him.  Besides, they're known to relieve stress.  Well maybe not in the puppy stage when they're chewing up everything, but there's older ones to adopt if you don't relish that stage.
  • Make yourself get out now and then.  You may not feel interest in anything, things that interested you before seem to feel flat now.  That's normal.  Push yourself out of your comfort zone just a wee bit now and then.  Eating out alone, going to a movie alone or church alone, all of these things are hard to do at first.  You may feel you flunked at it, cried throughout, that's okay, you did it, you tried, and eventually you get a little better at it.  If I waited until I had someone to do things with I'd be stuck at home a lot.
  • Keep coming here.  We've been through it and we're all going through this together.
  • Look for joy in every day.  It will be hard to find at first, but in practicing this, it will change your focus so you can embrace what IS rather than merely focusing on what ISN'T.  It teaches you to live in the present and appreciate fully.  You have lost your big joy in life, and all other small joys may seem insignificant in comparison, but rather than compare what used to be to what is, learn the ability to appreciate each and every small thing that comes your way...a rainbow, a phone call from a friend, unexpected money, a stranger smiling at you, whatever the small joy, embrace it.  It's an art that takes practice and is life changing if you continue it.
  • Eventually consider volunteering.  It helps us when we're outward focused, it's a win/win.

(((hugs)))  Praying for you today.

 

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Sorry, JonathanFive, Rich had another senior moment. Either that, or I was too quick on the keyboard :)

5 hours ago, weswej said:

I'm just over the two years ago mark in my grief life.

Welcome to our board! I wish you could have joined this board two years ago; but better late than never. You've come to a great place with lots of fine people. We help each other to get through every day. We can do the same for you. Please continue to post your feelings here.

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