The majority of us can reach a common agreement that each of us experiences grief in our own way. Men can differ from women, and children can experience grief differently from adults.
Interestingly enough, however, studies have been done and books have been written on the common stages of grief that people seem to each face. Now, we may face these stages differently at different times, but experts agree that most of us will experience these stages in some intensity.
Here are the common stages of grief:
Denial is one of the earliest of the common stages of grief and is that initial period of disbelief that a loved one has passed. Many verbally express that “I can’t believe it,” but for others it can go much deeper, lasting for weeks or even months. Denial is often accompanied by avoidance, where the person grieving avoids the subject or the people reaching out to help them in their grief. For most, getting through the denial phase is a matter of time and acceptance.
When a death occurs, it is common to be followed by anger, especially at those we may deem somehow responsible for the death. Almost no one may be excluded from blame including doctors, clergy, other family members, God, and even the deceased themselves. Those who blame others for death out of anger are often seeking a way better to take hold of the situation and gain some control.
Depression is usually a sign of recognition and the full weight of the death of a loved one has occurred. This can seem like the deepest and darkest part of grief, but it is often followed by acceptance.
Grieving is most commonly concluded through some form of acceptance and the willingness to move on. Acceptance may sound easier than it is, and can sometimes be very hard, but it is a critical part of the process.
If you have not experienced these common stages of grief personally, you may have witnessed them. They are a normal part of the process unless the person grieving gets “stuck” in the process. In these situations, a support group or even professional counseling may be helpful.
If your family doesn’t have a relationship with a Cincinnati area funeral home, we would be proud to be of service. We have a lengthy history of assisting families in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. We welcome you to reach out to us at your convenience