When mourning the loss of a loved one, the stages and steps you go through are universal by people from all walks of life. Mourning can stem from an individual’s own terminal illness, the loss of a deeply valued or close relationship, or the death of a valued being, whether it be a human or animal. While each person works through these five stages differently, we all go through them.
In our process of bereavement, we take varying lengths of time and intensity to work through each step but it is important to give yourself the necessary amount of time in order to work through them.
The five Stages of grieving
1. Denial and isolation: This first reaction to learning of the illness or death of a cherished loved one is to deny it. It’s a defense mechanism that is totally normal in order to rationalize the overwhelming emotions brought on by this situation. Think of it as a buffer. This is a temporary response that gets us through the first wave of grief.
2. Anger: This is where the reality sets in and the emotional pain starts to emerge. Anger may be aimed at objects, people, friends or family, but it stems from being angry that the person has caused us pain or left us.
3. Bargaining: Our unavoidable feelings of helplessness and vulnerability ultimately lead to wanting to regain that control by means of bargaining. In other words, we try to make a deal with a higher power in order to postpone the inevitable. This is a weaker line of defense in order to protect our emotions from what’s really going on. For example:
- “If only we had sought out medical attention sooner…”
- “If only I had gotten that second opinion from a different doctor…”
- “If only I had gotten to say one more thing to them…”
4. Depression: The most familiar of them all, this reaction is that feeling of helplessness and loss of all happiness and positivity. Sadness and regret are the most common forms of depression.
5. Acceptance: Reaching this stage of the grieving process is a gift that is not given to everyone. Death, or another form of a loss, may be sudden and unexpected which can lead someone to never move beyond our anger or denial. But should you move through these stages and get to this point, you have found that inner peace and calm in accepting the fact that your loved one is gone.
Although these stages may vary by person, it’s healthy to go through each of them for a short while while going through your grieving and when dealing with this, setting up some sort of mourning service in Oakland, CA can certainly help you attain closure and reach the point of acceptance.
Mourning services in Oakland, CA can help give you the chance to say your goodbyes and be around loved ones that feel the same as you in order to obtain that final closure that you need. Losing someone or something is never easy and it is an emotional process that you need to work through; however, mourning services in Oakland, CA are able to help get you to that acceptance stage.