Feeling Alone in Grief
Providing grief resources is among the cremation services offered in Phoenix, AZ. These include a comprehensive range of grief resources that can offer a lot of support and help you make your way through the grieving process. It’s important to take advantage of these grief resources because they can connect you with other people who are on a similar path to yours as they adjust to the death of someone they love.
However, you shouldn’t be surprised, even though you have a great care network and you have supportive family and friends, that you find out that there is an aloneness you experience when you’re grieving. This aloneness is often called loneliness, but it is not loneliness in the traditional sense of the word (simply being without any other people).
Loneliness means different things to everyone. It can be easy to assume that it just means being alone, but it often means something different to each person. For example, introverts have to be and crave being alone (by themselves) after interacting with people and life for any length of time so that they can recharge. However, those same introverts can be experiencing loneliness after the death of a loved one.
The definition of loneliness in the Encyclopedia of Mental Health (1998) says that it is “The subjective psychological discomfort people experience when their network of social relationships is significantly deficit in either quality or quantity.”
What this means is that people experience loneliness when their internal desires and needs are not met by any of their social relationships.
Each person’s loneliness, therefore, lies in the difference between what they want and what they have. That experience is different for everyone. That experience is different for you than it is for anyone else.
When someone we love dies, our lives are immediately filled with a want. That want is a void inside us that can never be filled by anyone else, at least not in the same way as our loved one who has died filled it.
When we are grieving, this loneliness permeates every aspect of our lives. Our loved one is gone and won’t be back. That is an irreversible loneliness that can’t be fixed. Grief what we pay for love. When someone whom we love and who loved us back dies, it is inevitable that parts of us die with them.
The things that we did with our loved one are over. The companionship we shared with our loved ones has disappeared. The familiar patterns of our lives together are disrupted, leaving us to, in a sense, start over without any idea how to start over. We’ve also lost, perhaps, our only safety net, because we could depend on our loved being there for us in any and all circumstances.
All of this is deeply unsettling. We may feel, because of the loneliness that our loved one’s loss has created, that we can’t depend on anyone else but ourselves anymore. In turn, this feeling can cause us to create physical and emotional distance between ourselves and other people, including friends, family members, and total strangers. The irony is that this makes loneliness even worse.
Eventually in your grief journey, loneliness gives way to acceptance of what is without ever forgetting what was. You acknowledge that what was is in the past, but that your life is happening in the present.
This doesn’t happen overnight. And it’s often a bumpy road to get to this point in your grief. But don’t forget to be kind to yourself while you’re on the way.
For more information about grief resources and cremation services offered in Phoenix, AZ, including grief resources, our caring and knowledgeable staff at Simply Cremations & Funeral Arrangements is here to assist you.