Stages of Grief

Stages and the Different Faces of Grief

Experts have categorized the grieving process into several different stages, however the process is not linear, and the stages are merely used as a model for what could be expected. Their durations vary greatly in length, depending on the individual. Getting support not only helps a person cope, but often shortens the grieving period. describes the five “classical stages, however it is not the only way to describe them (other sources describe the grief process using seven stages or even three stages ).

The five stages:

* Denialthis can’t be happening

Anger –why me

Bargaining – If only or what if

Depressionwhat’ s the use

Acceptancelife goes on

Grief is a very individual experience, with no “normal” pattern or timeline of grieving. There is no right or wrong way to grieve – each person grieves in their own way and at their own pace. Not everyone goes through all the stages or in a prescribed order, although everyone experiences at least some of the emotions involved.

Other common manifestations of your grief include the common need to tell your story (which will make it easier to accept your loss), and the tendency to isolate yourself, especially in the early stages; if the isolation goes on for too long, seek professional help.

Six Things to Help You Move Forward

1. HONOR YOUR PAIN: Remember the VALUE of the relationship, CHERISH the common need to tell your story, and hold dear the relationship


3. COURAGE: – ability to do what you think is right despite what others say

4. GRIEF: internal thoughts and feelings

5. MOURNING: outward expression of grief. (the funeral, memorial service, receiving validation of the loss)

6. REALITY: Feelings have one ambition in life – to be felt. When we deny, inhibit, defend our emotions, the pain lasts LONGER

He who has no time to mourn, has no time to heal. It doesn’t matter how slow you go as long as you move.

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