Reply
Trusted Contributor

To Join a Grief Support or Not

I have found that meaningful support after the loss of a loved one or ones is probably my most challenging experience.  I have had my ups and downs which is tough given that I should have been concentrating on grieving not facing the hurdles of insensitivity and in some cases just plan disinterest (this is a nice word for all the other feelings of lack of support).  My first expectation was to look for support at my church, which was supportive up to my husband's funeral services.  After that I experienced deafening silence!  Wow.  The first holidays were spent in that vacuum unnecessarily.  All I can say is that I never gave up hope that I would find kindred spirits.  As many of us shared in past posts, the kindness of strangers is awesome and blessed.  From these of acts of kindness, I started to look at other avenues for support, knowing that I could not do this on my own.  I reached out to friends including those from the past I respected and found out about GriefShare, which was God sent for me.  The local hospices and hospitals also offer grievance counseling as well.  I tried these with mixed results.  The takeaway is not to give up.  Finding the right fit makes the difference.  I belong to a partner in loss group, which has been excellent in talking to those experiencing many of the same trials and tribulations.  I also am part of a multigenerational group, which adds another dimension of the pain and suffering.  I found it helps to hear their stories too.  If you have a strong support group on your own through family and friends that is great, but I suspect that is not the case for everyone.  Remember that as well-meaning as they people may be, in many ways they may not relate to you and may start giving unhelpful advice.  I was told by one widow that I would have a hard time because I am too quiet.  Wow.  If something like this happens to you, just move on and feel sorry for them.  I have found many of these "well meaning" folks still have unresolved issues of their own.  That is why I have found that more experienced counselors have been most helpful to me.  Support during the grievance process has been instrumental in getting me to "right" thinking and keeping me on the right path.  I encourage you to keep an open mind. You may find the support you need from the most unexpected places and people.  There is hope in this dark time for us.  Good luck, Sue

Social Butterfly

I have found comfort in this site, along with reading various go to and pick up books that deal with grieving on just getting on with life ..Not to say I don't have my sad moments because I do..This void that can't be filled but wonderful memories of the life that we shared for 63 years together sustain me.. ...Plus I have my two adult girls, adult son his spouse and  grandchildren and great grandchildren...A sister who comes by weekly and a cousin of my husbands who calls now and then to check up on me...Plus I correspond with my neighbor who recently lost her spouse about 2 years ago and  nieces (3) and keep in touch via the e-mails. I am an avid reader, knitter, like to take pictures of nature..I was invited to a support group but that's not my bag...I go out weekly with my daughter to just get out and walk around be it shopping or just browsing or doing necessary appointments. Yes the holidays which came too soon right after my husbands passing in November were bitter/sweet because he wasn't there to share the moment (but in my heart I know his presence was felt)...Life goes on ..people come and go in your life so we have to make the best of the situation at hand..

Trusted Contributor

@jonibee , sounds like you have an awesome support system 🙂

0 Kudos
269 Views
0
Report
Trusted Contributor

Awesome topic Sue @SueS788527 !!! As I age, I only trust my only child to be there for me. At age 64, soon to be 65, my heart and trust cannot take anymore betrayals (spelling may be off as usual). When I was young, yes, participated in various support groups and counseling. Even on this site I have experienced hate, but there are also AWESOME folks which is why I stay! Nicole 🤎🤗

Honored Social Butterfly

Great topic @SueS788527  I signed up for a 

support group through the funeral home but 

the day it started I cancelled. I just couldn’t 

and still can’t bear my soul to a room full of

people I don’t know. I am lucky to have family

and a few close friends that have supported

me on this journey. A lot of people just walk

away from you after the funeral. For me,

that was my husbands entire side of the

family. I was angry about that but I don’t

want anyone in my life who can’t support me. Everything happens for a reason.

I’m glad your support group has helped you.

Grieving is a very individual process for all

of us

Trusted Contributor

I did and am doing support groups, but I do not share the most personal experiences at them.  I save that for my counselor.  I am so fortunate that my husband's side of the family is very supportive.  My side too.  Online support here is good too.

Trusted Contributor

Carolyn @CarolynS674392 , that is awesome you have this support! 🤎🤗

0 Kudos
228 Views
0
Report
Trusted Contributor

Hi, KT (aka Social Butterfly, Beatlelover).  Thank you for your candid response.  I think, like your name, you are sociable and open minded.  Yes, I understand your hesitation to share inner most thoughts with strangers.  I temper how much I say as well since most people don't want to hear it.  I have found that this grief journey for me has been twofold - a solo journey where I self-reflect and also build and strengthen relationships.  Journaling has helped me a lot, particularly in dealing with latent anger.  It has been a way to bring some closure on unresolved issues that I cannot change but still have to deal with.  I know you will make the right choices on what support you need. That is part of the renewal process that goes with grieving your loved one.  Don't put any pressure on yourself.  This is a marathon journey, at least it is for me.  Always remember, you did the best you could you under difficult circumstances and there are people out there who are your friends. Take care.  Sending you positive thoughts.  Sue 🍀

Honored Social Butterfly

Thank you for your thoughts. The

support on here helps me most of

all. For that I’m immensely thankful 💜

Trusted Contributor

@BeatleloverKT just wanted to let you know how much I have APPRECIATED your kudos. They are like hugs to me. Nicole 🤎🤗

cancel
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Users
Need to Know

"I downloaded AARP Perks to assist in staying connected and never missing out on a discount!" -LeeshaD341679

AARP Perks

More From AARP