How to cope with the loss of a loved one?

The departure of a loved one from life is a very serious test for the psyche. Suffering can cause irreparable harm to her, and also make life very difficult. And although in such a difficult situation it is problematic to think about your own health, the consequences of grief can be minimized or avoided.

How do we react to the death of people close to us?

A person experiences four stages of emotional reaction to the pain of loss.


This stage is characterized by a feeling of the unreality of what happened, the gaze of an impassive observer. This is a consequence of the work of the protective mechanism of the psyche, akin to the reaction of denial.

A person may not believe in what happened even if he objectively realizes that the deceased is no longer there. However, protection sometimes fails, and a pathological reaction can develop, up to post-traumatic disorder. Pain and grief must be endured, so today doctors do not recommend the use of sedatives for relief – this is only a delay, and emotions have an accumulating effect that will increase suffering a hundredfold, but much later – when the support of loved ones will no longer be so active.


This stage can make a person feel guilty about their emotions. It should be understood that you have the right to feel angry with doctors, the perpetrators of death, or even the deceased.

You need to understand the irrationality of this feeling and not blame yourself for it. By the way, children are especially often angry with deceased parents, and due to the fact that it is more difficult for children to reflect, they need maximum support and attention during such a difficult period of their life.


This stage occurs mainly three to five months after the loss. A person realizes the inevitability and irreparability of death. At this time, he can often return in his thoughts to memories, refer to the image of the deceased, and the danger is the prospect of “life in the past.”

Moreover, by the time despair sets in, the support of others is no longer as active as in the early days due to the widespread misconception that it is hardest in the beginning. As stated above about the state of shock, this is not the case.


There can be a double attitude to any event. So after realizing the irreversibility of death and a period of despair, acceptance comes. By this moment, the person has suffered all the negativity and is ready to accept the fact of life and move on.

It should be understood that self-regulation in such a situation can be dangerous, and the support and love of loved ones will help to cope with the loss. Therefore, you should not withdraw into yourself, the desire to do this is caused by the prerequisites of depressive states. We recommend not to forget about your health and turn to a specialist for help in difficult moments.

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