Some Facts of Life After a Death
People want you to be “fine”– not unhappy. It is a couple’s society. You may feel that you are going crazy. Tears come unbidden. Physicians want to give you medication. Finances change, frequently for the worse. Some friends and acquaintances drift away. Skills that have not been used have atrophied and need to be relearned. There is anger, and guilt about the anger. You may question your faith. People do not know what to say to you. Widowers may remarry soon. Widows probably won’t. People will try to comfort you by saying, “It is for the best.” You feel vulnerable to exploitation. You feel incomplete. Something is missing. There are “Why’s” and “If Only’s.” People may avoid talking about the deceased, thinking that they do not want to upset you. Chronic health problems may flare up. People will want to give you advice or tell you what to do. Relationships change.
From Bereavement and Support by Marylou Hughes, LCSW, DPA, Taylor & Francis, 1995. Used with permission. Thank you also to Linda Flatt, author, The Basics: Facilitating a Suicide Survivors Support Group.