Unlike grief theories that propose defined stages, grief is not linear, nor is it universal. We grieve differently.
Now I feel nothing. I’m numb. My psychologist describes it as “taking care of business,” reframing what I’m going through, my coping mechanism, in a positive way.
Quoting MedlinePlus, NIH, U.S. National Library of Medicine at https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/001530.htm
People’s responses to grief will be different, depending on the circumstances of the death. For example, if the person who died had a chronic illness, the death may have been expected. The end of the person’s suffering might even have come as a relief. If the death was accidental or violent, coming to a stage of acceptance might take longer.
One way to describe grief is in five stages. These reactions might not occur in a specific order, and can occur together. Not everyone experiences all of these emotions:
- Denial, disbelief, numbness
- Anger, blaming others
- Bargaining (for instance, “If I am cured of this cancer, I will never smoke again.”)
- Depressed mood, sadness, and crying
- Acceptance, coming to terms
People who are grieving may have crying spells, trouble sleeping, and lack of productivity at work.
A version of this post was previously published on KittOMalley.com and is republished here with permission from the author.
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Photo credit: Kitt O’Malley