Coping With Grief after loss of spouse

How can you overcome the problems you face after loss of spouse? First, you must recognize that grief is necessary; it is something you must work through. There are no shortcuts.

The death of a spouse, like that of any other close loved one, can be a life changing, transformative event. It is important to express your feelings. Take time to cry. Don’t be afraid to share your tears and feelings with others. Express your anger when you feel the need. Talk openly with family members and friends; this is a time to lean on them. Some of your friends may feel awkward for awhile because they don’t know how to talk to you about your loss. You can help them by simply telling them what your needs are. Don’t try to protect your children or other family members by hiding your sadness.

If you normally have a pressing schedule, try to lighten it. Remember, A grief is mentally taxing; you do not need the added strain of too much to do.

Set aside some quiet time for yourself, time when you can think about your spouse’s death and put things into perspective.

If you are worried that you are not coping well with your grief, consider talking to an expert or a counselor. You may be relieved to discover that you are reacting normally. If you believe you need help, ask your doctor, clergy or funeral director to suggest a counselor who will help you through your transition. The Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) has a list of recognized thanatologists or counselors on its website:

Many bereaved spouses find adjusting to life without a partner becomes easier if they talk to others in the same situation. You might want to consider joining a local support group.

After some time and effort, you will adjust to your new life and your grief will diminish. This does not mean you must forget your loved one; it means you have accepted the death and can begin to live each day in the present, savoring the memories as part of your new life. In fact, many agree the best way to honor a loved one who died, is to live a life full of friendship and even new love.

Dealing properly with your grief can make it all possible.


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