How to Cope with Anticipatory Grief

February 27, 2019 11:01 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Anticipatory grief differs in some ways from the grief you experience after a person dies (otherwise known as “conventional” grief). This type of grief is the sadness that frequently occurs in the final days of a person’s life, and can be experienced both by the person who is nearing death as well as by the loved ones of that person.

There are some silver linings to this type of grief. It does, for example, present an opportunity to say goodbye, which does not occur with a sudden death. However, it is important to note that anticipatory grief does not replace or shorten the grief a person experiences following the death of a loved one—these are entirely different forms of grief.

Here are some tips from a provider of funeral services in Lake City, FL that can help you cope with this unique form of grief.

Allow yourself to grieve

Do not feel guilty about grieving. Being honest with yourself about the feelings you’re experiencing can be cathartic and a true relief. It’s common for people to feel as though grieving before the death of a loved one shows a lack of support for their dying companion, but this is simply a natural part of the process of loss, and it is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of.

Share your feelings

It can be extremely difficult to open up about feelings of grief, but in many cases, having someone with whom you can share your feelings can be a tremendous help. You can confide in a relative or in a close friend who will be comfortable as you express the strong emotions you have. When looking for a confidant, you should try to find someone who you know is a good listener, and who will not try to offer you a fix or a solution. You sharing with them is not an invitation for them to tell you what you should do, but rather you simply needing to get your feelings off your chest.

Any feelings you have at this time are going to be completely natural, but keeping them bottled up can lead to even more feelings of guilt and anger.

Spend time with your loved one

Many people find it difficult to spend time with a loved one who is dying. We often hear people say they do not want to remember their loved one in that way. However, spending time together is important for both of you. Many people regret avoiding visiting a dying loved one. And in most cases, visiting a loved one who is near death will do nothing to negatively affect your memory of them.

There are plenty of meaningful ways for you to spend time together, such as looking through old photo albums or items. You might also wish to make audio or video recordings of them sharing stories with you.

For more tips, or for help with preparing for a funeral service in Lake City, FL, reach out to ICS Cremation & Funeral Home today.

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