Coping With Loss

Loss is a tough subject to discuss. It is a subject we like to avoid at all cost. The problem is that it is unavoidable. We will all deal with loss in our lifetime. Avoiding the subject may be our safety net. It gives us comfort and keeps us at ease. But avoiding isn’t always the best solution. Life is unpredictable and we should expect that loss is inevitable. People may think this is a grim way of looking at life, but it isn’t. It is about accepting the reality. Acceptance brings peace of mind and freedom. It will allow an individual to cope, manage loss, and the grieving process will be much easier. It will still be painful. Loss comes with pain. It will just be easier to deal with being able to face the dark reality of life.

I am talking about this heavy subject, because a coworker of mine lost a close friend recently, and discussed his concerns to me about it. He even witnessed it in person. When he was explaining what happened. I felt a lot of empathy and sorrow for him. It is tough knowing what to say in those situations. I am sorry seems so simplistic, but sometimes that is all you can say. We may even say things that can be hurtful to the individual, because we think these words are helpful, or we just don’t know what to say. The one thing you can do as an individual is be there and listen.

As he was telling me his story, he felt said he felt guilt for not doing more to save him. This is a very normal reaction to witnessing a death. Guilt is one emotion that will most likely be felt, during the grieving process. It is understandable, but as I reminded him that at the moment you can only do all you can do. It is a stressful environment and it can be hard to think logically in that type of environment. The best thing you can do for yourself is be kind and compassionate towards oneself, during grief. An individual is dealing with enough, during that time. You don’t want to add self-blame to the mix.

Sadness, sorrow, and even depression will be felt, during the process of grief. It is okay to feel these emotions. It is best to not mask it with external means(alcohol, drugs, food). We need to endure the pain and sadness, so that we can move forward and accept.

It does get better, but one must go through the pain of loss. Talking to others who understand can be very helpful. Be it family, friends, support groups, people who dealt with loss as well can be comforting. I gave him as much comfort as I can, but having someone there to listen can be enough. If there is no one there to listen, than journaling can be another outlet to get your feelings out there. Also crying, screaming, or just taking some time off to just grieve is perfectly okay. If you want to stay in bed and not do anything, that is okay as well. No one should feel ashamed of grieving or sadness. There is no quick fix or happy pill. We all have our own journey through the grieving process, some take longer than others. There is no timetable to grieving. You get through when you are ready, no one else should define that for you.

Not just a loss of someone can create discomfort, but a loss of a job, home, financial security, divorce, and accident(cultivating a loss of an ability to walk/see etc,.). We need to be aware that loss is part of life. It is better to be aware and prepared as much as you can, because the unavoidable will happen. Preparation and awareness can help you heal and find peace much sooner. It will still hurt, but it won’t be as devastating to your well-being if one chooses to avoid the subject.

Understanding & Coping with Loss and Trauma | Dr. Christina Hibbert


Losing someone or something you love is something that can hurt us deeply. It is something we don’t want to see happen, but unfortunately in life losing someone/something is unavoidable. As it is unavoidable it is best to find ways to cope with a loss. There will most likely be sadness, and in some cases depression. Your thoughts will be filled with lots of negativity. I had a lot of negative thoughts when I experienced a recent loss, although this person wasn’t a close loved one. They had some impact in my life and it was sad to hear of this person’s passing. I just saw the bad and negative things in life. This is quite normal with grief. One thing you should know that you shouldn’t feel guilty or shame for being sad. I preach happiness, and yes, we should strive for happiness, but losing a loved one is tough, and sadness will happen. The best thing is not to push away these feelings, or use defense mechanisms, like alcohol, drugs etc. Avoiding your sadness is not going to help you get through this tough time. We must learn to understand our sadness before we can move on. It is not a fun feeling being sad, but we have to learn to allow our emotions to go through the process of grief. I had many mixed feelings, and lots of questions. I also let out a couple of tears, which is okay as well. We are told we need to get over it, and be happy, but losing someone or something is hard, and we have every right to be sad. Once we are able to ruminate over our thoughts and feelings during this time. That is when we are able to eventually move on and get back to as normal as we can. Avoiding our sadness will not help us move on. The sadness will persist, and you may even get addicted to those unhealthy defense mechanisms to keep you from thinking about those thoughts and feelings. That will only have a negative impact on you. You should find healthy ways to cope and help you progress towards a normal life.

I was able to find music. After being sad for two days. I decided I didn’t want to be sad anymore. I ruminated over my sadness, but now it was time to get my life back to ‘normal.’ I decided to listen to music. I listened to songs about loss at first, but realized that wasn’t helpful, then I moved on to inspirational music, and that really helped me change my perspective on things. It made me see the good and positive things in life. That is when I was able to get back to ‘normal’ and become happy again. Meditation was also helpful. It helped me deal with my thoughts, and put me in a state of peace and relaxation.  Now we all grieve differently, and have different ways that can help us cope with grief. You have to find ways that can help you. It can be writing, drawing, reading, dancing, exercising etc. Anything that can help you deal with your emotions and get you back to ‘normal’ life. Talking to others who can relate, or who are going through what you are going through can be helpful, but there may be times when you just want to be alone and not be bothered. That is okay as well. Just as long as the isolation doesn’t go on for too long. Support groups can be helpful as well. I just want to say it is okay to be sad, cry, want to be alone, lay in bed, stay home. It is okay to grieve, and you should take as long as you need to grieve, some grieve longer than others. We are all different and no one should tell you how, or how long to grieve. Now grieving is healthy, but there is a point when it can lead to depression. If the sadness persist for a long period of time, then that is when professional help is needed.

I put normal in quotations, because after a loss your life is never the same. It won’t be as normal as it was, but it will be close, and you may even learn something, and come out stronger from this experience.