You may have heard the term “The Five Stages of Grief” before. It is a widely accepted model for how we deal with grief developed by Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. She introduced her model in the 1969 book, “On Death and Dying. The Five Stages of Grief”. “The Stages” theory has been credited with helping many people understand their feelings after the loss of someone close to them.
Denial —It’s hard to believe that your loved one has actually died and will no longer be a part of your life. At first, you may feel numb or as if you are in shock. You may find yourself thinking that “it cannot possibly be.” During the denial stage, many people withdraw and isolate themselves from others.
Anger —You may find yourself angry at a number of people for a number of reasons. You might be angry at the person who has died, the situation, your family members, the doctor, or even yourself. Most experts recommend that you recognize your anger for what it is and you allow yourself to work through it. Don’t suppress it.Acknowledge it and address it.
Bargaining — Understandably, you want things to go back to the way they were so you may try to make a deal with a higher power so that your loved one will not be ill or die. You may be consumed with a lot of “only ifs” and “what ifs.” Only if one more procedure is done, only if we had done. Going through this stage can help you deal with the aftermath of the loss.
Depression — A very natural reaction to a loss is depression. You may feel overwhelming sadness and emptiness. It may be hard to go about daily activities. It is not unusual to feel depression after a loss but you may be concerned about these feelings. If you are worried about how you feel, do not hesitate to seek help. Therapist, grief counselors, and support groups are excellent resources.
Acceptance — While you may never get over missing the person you have lost, you will one day feel ready to move on. After some time you will begin to feel that things will be OK. You will accept what has happened and reach the last stage of your grief.
Thornton’s Funeral Home is happy to assist you in finding resources that will help you manage your grief and deal with the loss of your loved one.