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Talking about grief is not a subject many people feel comfortable with.
It would probably be fair to say that the time you most need to talk about it is when you least feel like it! Opening up about raw feelings when you are hurting and just wanting to hide away is a natural thing and talking about feelings is not easy for some people let alone exposing how you are feeling about sorrow, loneliness and heartache. Women are usually more open with their sharing of such subjects and normally have at least one close friend to confide in or if they are lucky a network of females who share similar interests and hobbies, family or clubs they belong to. Men are notoriously stoic and tend to retreat inwardly rather than openly confess they are hurting. To a male they may feel they are showing signs of weakness if they confess to a friend or colleague that they are not coping or they are feeling lost and vulnerable.
Unfortunately the older we get the more people, pets, partnerships, marriages, children, jobs and sometimes investments we lose. It goes with the territory of age. It can get quite scary and you can begin to feel very “temporary” when you farewell more and more relations, friends and co-workers simply because everyone is getting older. The sense of loss doesn’t only come with losing someone to dying. When a marriage has ended the grief can be overwhelming. If a stellar career comes to an end the emptiness and sense of loss can be intense.
Likewise, losing one of our beloved pets who have become another member of our family can be devastating and sometimes indescribable. Try telling a person who has never owned a faithful dog how you feel when your gorgeous poochie pal you’ve loved for fourteen years has died. They will probably look at you as if to say “Jeez, it was only a dog!” Hardly makes you feel better does it?
Losing someone you love is painful. When it happens to you it can knock you sideways and you can wonder whether you will ever get over it. You will all have heard the phrase, “Time Heals”. When the pain of loss is fresh, hearing someone say “time heals” is no comfort and sometimes time doesn’t heal. Then what do you do? And how long is “time”? Some people recover quickly and some take longer. Some people never quite heal. Everyone is unique and each person needs to discover a way of coping and moving through the grieving process.
Reaching out for help can be difficult and finding the right place to go can be daunting. So this time, I am reaching out to each and every one of you. Through this fantastic resource, the Grown Ups website, you can write to me and tell me how you’re doing. If you need some help and advice on anything at all you are having a problem with to do with all the losses I have mentioned here or anything else you are feeling empty and confused about, please think of me as someone who has been in the same place as you many times. If I have made my way through it all, you can do it too.
I look forward to hearing from you on your way to recovery.