When planning for a funeral and dealing with all the burial and financial logistics, you may sometimes fail to give yourself the time to work through the fraught emotions you may be pushing aside.
The Good Grief Center for Bereavement Support provides a number of tips for people who are currently experiencing the loss of a loved one. The group notes that to process all of the meaning, memories and needs that a recently deceased family member or friend provided to you will take a lot of time, energy and work. Turn to other friends, relatives or even professional counselors at this time to help you work through the loss.
Perhaps one of the most important pieces of advice from the source is to give yourself permission to grieve. “Let yourself enter the emotions of grief,” the center says. “Grievers tend naturally to avoid the painful emotions. Losing someone close to you means you deserve to allow yourself to feel all your emotions – sadness, anger, intense longing, guilt and others.”
While you may be feeling emotionally drained during this period, it is vital that you maintain your physical health and avoid the emotional crutches such as alcohol or drugs that some use to alleviate their pain. Again, your support network of friends and family will be essential at this time. Take a break, concentrate on nourishing your body and soul, be sure to rest and process your grief, the center recommends.
If you do not feel that there are people in your current social circle to whom you can turn, it may be better to find groups of other people who are experiencing similar emotions. There are countless resources for finding support groups in your region or specific to your situation, such as the Foundation for Grieving Children’s directory or the government’s National Resource Directory, which is directed toward military veterans, their families and caregivers. For those who have a religious affiliation, clergy members may also be able to guide you in the direction of helpful groups.
That said, the Good Grief Center also notes that you should not feel pressure to join any groups if you do not feel comfortable with the idea or don’t think that they will help you. Resist the urge to put a time limit on yourself in regards to your grief. It may take several years to work through all of the emotions, and new feelings may arise as you reflect on how you are feeling.
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