Grief is how we express the deep sorrow we feel when we have experienced loss. The form of loss most recognized by our society is the death of a loved one. However, most of us also experience a deep sense of loss when we go through life-changing events such as:
- An unexpected or unwelcome need to move out of our home
- Care giving responsibilities
- Retirement/Loss of a job/Starting a new career
- Separation/disconnect from someone dear to us
- Pet loss
- Decline in health (yours or a significant other)
Our society offers a variety of ceremonies in recognition of life’s “happier” events such as a birth, milestone birthdays, graduations, marriage, a new job and retirement. Unfortunately, with the exception of certain types of death, our society does not offer a means for recognition of life’s sadder events like those described above. When “symbolic loss,” is not given the needed support, our well-being is negatively impacted. Out of fear of ridicule, indifference or scorn, we push-down and hide our sense of loss. Referred to as disenfranchise grief, we bottle-up our feelings of loss and become stuck and unable to move forward with our present and future lives. Many recent studies on this topic have identified a connection between unresolved losses and an increase in anxiety and depression. Taking steps to resolve one’s grief is essential for living a higher quality of life.
The Process of Grieving
The process of grieving is not a simple experience. People may feel calm for days or weeks on end and then, almost without warning, they find themselves overwhelmed with sadness, anger, or flowing tears. The purpose of The Grief Spot is to help people come to grips with loss and adapt to the new norm. As our website icon ‘be in the present’ supports, it is important for one’s well-being to deal with feelings of loss when they first occur. Doing so can reduce the intensity of grief and of grieving and reduce the risks for developing other health issues.
Resolving the feelings of loss is the result of opening up to grief when it is first happening, learning to accept the changing circumstances and then trusting that we will emerge stronger, more centered and whole. This is no small task and one that is often too big to process without help. The challenge becomes even greater when our sense of loss is disregarded or discounted by others.