First, I’d like to acknowledge how hard this moment may be if you’re reading this blog post. Many people are familiar with the pain associated with the loss of a grandparent to natural causes or disease, but many who I see often talk about how the loss of a someone by suicide leaves a different kind of impact on their lives.
Often people find themselves combing through old text messages, looking at pictures, replaying the last conversation that they had with their friends or wishing that they could have collectively looked at the way they spoke on Facebook and not said things like, “I want to kill myself…”, or “I’m so depressed these shoes weren’t on sale…”
If you find yourself thinking or doing anything like what is described above know that it is a part of the natural grieving process; to seek answers in the aftermath of a trauma. It’s important to balance this with appropriate self-care and supports.
Below are suggestions that others have found to be helpful which you can consider:
- Drinking lots of water: This flushes the toxins from your body. Staying hydrated also helps your brain and organs to function properly.
- Limiting your alcohol intake: If you choose to drink in the aftermath of a loss, allow yourself to do so in moderation. Consuming higher amounts of alcohol numbs/masks our emotions and does not allow you to properly experience the grieving process.
- Utilizing group support(s): Spend time with friends and family that you trust. If you played on a soccer team or were a part of an acting crew with this friend, stay connected with that group of friends. Surrounding yourself with supportive people encourages healing and healthy conversation.
- Unplugging: Social media and news comments can tend to be negative and most people find that reading these sets their mind in a spiral. Allow yourself time to process without outside influences.
- Seeking appropriate professional help: If you notice that you’re not coping well and identify the need for help, feel free to give me a call. Whether you decide to work with me or not, I would be happy to help you seek services.
Outside of those suggestions, be sure to always treat yourself with compassion as you absolutely deserve this. You may experience times where you feel happy, thinking that you’ve gone through the grieving process, and then something triggers the thought of this loss. It’s completely appropriate for this to happen and does not mean that you have failed. The grieving process looks different for everyone and you are entitled to yours.
What if I want help?
I am a New Jersey based counselor that specializes in treating youth (14+) and adults in the aftermath of a trauma to learn how to effectively cope and begin the healing process by working toward their wellness goals. I also specialize in counseling those in the LGBT* community and those living with sexual issues. If you would like a partner in your recovery journey, please book a complimentary 15-minute consultation or first appointment through the client portal or contact me at [email protected] or (908) 248-2762.
“Use your voice for kindness, your ears for compassion, your hands for charity, your mind for truth, and your heart for love.” -unknown