Coping With Grief and Loss

Grief is a normal response to loss during or after a disaster or other traumatic event. It can be caused by the death of a family member, friend, or even a pet. It’s also a normal reaction to drastic changes to daily routines and ways of life that usually bring us comfort and a feeling of stability. Loss of a job and moving to a new location are typical examples.

Sadly, many more people than usual are experiencing grief these days because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has drastically increased deaths nationwide, and also brought significant life changes that can cause grief, such as job loss and social isolation, to many people.  

Common reactions to grief and loss include:

  • Shock, disbelief, or denial
  • Anxiety
  • Distress
  • Anger
  • Periods of sadness
  • Loss of sleep and loss of appetite

It’s important to remember that grief is both universal and deeply personal. There is no right, wrong, or even typical way to experience it. All losses are significant and should be acknowledged.

Here are some ways to cope with feelings of grief:

Acknowledge your losses and your feelings of grief.

  • Find ways to express your grief. Some people express grief and find comfort through art, gardening, writing, talking to friends or family, cooking, music, gardening or other creative practices.

Consider developing new ways to stay connected with your loved ones after another loved one has passed away.

  • People who live together may consider playing board games and exercising together outdoors.
  • People who live alone or are separated from their loved ones may consider interacting through phone calls and apps that allow for playing games together virtually.

Ask for help from others.

If applicable, seek spiritual support from faith-based organizations, including your religious leaders and congregation. Accept emotional support from friends, family or neighbors as it suits your needs.  

Seek out grief counseling or mental health services, support groups, or hotlines, including those that can be offered over the phone or online.

If you have lost a loved one, Family Home Health Network offers grief and bereavement support that includes guidance, education, and resources. We understand losing a loved one can be a painful experience and provide the ongoing individual and/or group support you need when your loved one is no longer with us. Please reach out and let us know how we can help.

Categories: Caregiving, Hospice Care