Grief is a natural response to a loss of something or someone significant. The most common occurrence of grief is when someone you love passes away. When this occurs, it is common to find yourself engulfed by a wave of emotions – often going through a process known as the five stages of grief.
While we may understand why humans experience grief, we often find it challenging to overcome this emotion when it occurs to us. One of the main reasons why we feel this way might be because we are unprepared. As such, let us share five interesting facts about grief that you may not know of so that you can have a better understanding of this emotion.
1. Grief and mourning are different
It is common for people to conflate the concept of grief and mourning. After all, these words are often associated with sadness. However, there is a subtle difference between these two concepts.
Grief is a psychological reaction to loss, and it is experienced internally. Conversely, mourning is the external expression of loss, where the emotions are displayed through external acts. An excellent way of describing mourning is ‘the outward expression of grief’. There is no true way to mourn, and everyone has a different mourning process.
2. The generational difference in the grieving process
Studies have shown that the newer generations – particularly the Millennials and Gen Z – are more adept at managing their grief. Researchers have theorised that this could be due to the technological advancements of their time.
With the rise of digitalism, Millennials and Gen Z have more outlets to occupy themselves rather than focusing solely on their grief. Moreover, it is easier for them to find and connect with others during times of distress through the internet. On the contrary, the older generation who has less access to modern technology often find themselves cooped up with their grief, with few outlets to release and process their emotions.
3. Normal grief and complicated grief
Most people experience normal grief after the passing of a loved one. Eventually, they come to accept the death, and the grief transforms into acceptance. However, it is not uncommon for some to experience complicated grief, which lasts longer than the normal grieving process.
Initially, it is challenging to separate normal grief from complicated grief as the symptoms are identical. But unlike the normal grieving process, complicated grief only worsens as time goes by, keeping a person from healing emotionally. For those afflicted with this type of grief, performing even the simplest functions and routines is a challenge. If they do not seek professional help and support, the condition can worsen, leading to depression.
4. Grief requires acknowledgement, not avoidance
It is not uncommon to see some avoid confronting their grief. Due to its overwhelming nature, it may sometimes be easier to avoid this emotion instead. However, long-term avoidance of grief can have an adverse effect on a person.
Rather than healing from the grief, suppressing these emotions only makes them worse. While healing from grief is a challenging process that requires great strength, it is only through positive acknowledgement of these feelings that a person can move towards acceptance.
5. The nature of the relationship can affect the severity of the grieving process
A person would likely grieve differently depending on their relationship with the departed. If the deceased is an acquaintance, the grief will probably not be as severe as the death of a family member or close friend. As such, it is crucial to acknowledge this fact when we are in the midst of processing our emotions.
Grief is a natural part of human emotions. Knowing more about it can help us to process our grief independently and help others with their grief as well. However, at the end of the day, the most crucial thing to know is that you should not hesitate to reach out for help if you find yourself struggling with grief.
It can be a challenge to juggle processing your grief while arranging funeral matters for the departed at the same time. So if you find yourself struggling to cope, do not hesitate to reach out to a trusted funeral company to help you with the funeral arrangement. At 1Stop Buddhist Funeral Services, we aim to provide our customers with peace of mind by ensuring the funeral arrangement is tailored to their specifications.