“That’s the thing about pain. It demands to be felt.”
As the famous quote from ‘The fault in our stars’ goes, there is no way to avoid the pain and grief of losing a loved one. No matter how much preparation and mental fortitude you have in place, the aftermath of such a loss is often devastating and debilitating.
Coping with the overwhelming pain of losing a loved one is one of the biggest challenges of our lives. Apart from the assault of feelings like guilt, shock, fear, and anger, grief can also disrupt your physical health and adversely affect your ability to meet the responsibilities within the family and at work. And the grief is not limited to the physical loss — like the death of a parent or a pet. We all go through different degrees of grief when we are facing the prospect of divorce, job loss, chronic illness, estrangement from a long term friend etc.
As grieving is a highly personal and unique process, there is no right or wrong way to cope with grief. There is no standardized timetable for the progression of grief — it takes the time it takes. However, there are healthy ways to cope with the challenges of grief and come out stronger on the other side. Online support communities like GriefShare on CareSpace provide exactly such space, tools, and expert support. Whether you are recovering from a devastating bereavement or processing one of the more subtle losses in life, the GriefShare community of CareSpace provides a holistic resource base for your grief management.
The GriefShare community provides an amazing platform that connects people for information and inspiration as they deal with life-altering losses. No matter what you are looking for — grief education, coping ideas and suggestions, peer support, or simply want to share your own experience in an effort to help others, CareSpace platform accommodates all these priorities.
Here are four specific ways in which CareSpace helps you through your grieving process -
- Understanding and working through your grief -
Many of us make the terrible mistake of ignoring our grief or medicating it with addictive behaviours (binge eating, alcohol abuse etc.) hoping that by the time we wake up from our stupor the grief will go away. But in reality, nothing can be farther from the truth. Unless you acknowledge your pain and embrace the rollercoaster of emotions that follow, you are unlikely to ever get over it. Additionally, this acknowledgement gives you the power and empathy to accept your own vulnerability and seek help as and when you need it.
CareSpace platform is the ideal space for finding a non-judgemental and empathetic community that help you work through the complicated stages of your recovery. Discussions with members — whether on discussion boards or in private messages can help you put your own grief in perspective. Sharing your experience and feelings on these discussion boards can be cathartic for yourself and act as a source of hope for fellow members. The Q&A sessions on CareSpace with expert therapists and counsellors will be an excellent option for finding solutions to your specific and personal queries. In both discussions and expert sessions, you have the option of taking part anonymously.
2. Finding professional help
Seeking professional help — whether from a counsellor or therapist, for managing your grief need not be reserved for scenarios involving total dysfunction. As you process the confusing emotions, you might need professional help for just sorting through your experience, or want to vent without the fear of gossip/judgement or resorting to addictive behaviour. Specifically, if you notice that your grief is interfering with your ability to work or maintain interpersonal relationships, it is imperative that you seek professional help asap.
On the GriefShare community, you can consult with qualified doctors, therapists, counsellors, and psychologists regarding the specific challenges of your recovery. Additionally, you can also get recommendations for local healthcare services who can support you from fellow members. Some of us might require medication and supplements to help us manage our mental and physical health during this time. CareSpace comes with a handy tracker that lets you set reminders for dosage and timings of such medications to ensure that you never forget to take it.
Apart from the medical professionals, the members of GriefShare community also recommend local events and support groups to each other. This is a huge help for people who are either not ready or can not afford professional help.
3. Managing accompanying health conditions
Grief has a way of uprooting your life — especially your physical and emotional wellbeing. People who are experiencing intense grief are susceptible to mental health conditions like stress, anxiety, PTSD, depression, addiction etc. It has also been proven that grief weakens the immune system and makes you vulnerable to illnesses and infections. Experts have also observed broken heart syndrome characterised by sudden, intense chest pain that can be so severe it may be mistaken for a heart attack.
Along with the dedicated Grief management community, CareSpace also has several mental health (stress and anxiety, depression, addiction), physical health (hypertension, heart disease), and general health (nutrition, fitness, yoga) communities. Joining these communities will help you find holistic solutions that help you address all the complications that accompany your grieving process. For instance, the right dietary guidance from the nutritionists of the Food for Life community will help you strengthen your immune system. Similarly, keeping an eye on your blood pressure and glucose levels on the CareSpace tracker will empower you to seek medical assistance without delay and minimise complications.
4. Supporting a loved one as they process their grief
When a loved one is grieving, we are often afraid of intruding or saying the wrong thing and making them feel even worse. We also often feel helpless and inadequate in the face of their intense pain. Don’t let fears about saying or doing the wrong thing stop you from reaching out. Reassure them with your presence and let them express their emotions without judgements and inhibitions. Another good idea is to help out with practical stuff like planning a funeral, filing insurance claims, accompanying them to their therapy etc.
Through the resources like video library, social media feeds, and polls on CareSpace, you can find practical strategies to support a loved one through their grieving period. Apart from joining the GriefShare community, you also have the option of creating a private community and invite your family and friends to offer their support. The anticipation of loss throughout the end of life care in case of fatal diseases like cancer often results in grief long before the death occurs. If you or a loved one is struggling to come to terms with this situation, the dedicated communities of CareSpace can act as a great resource for finding valuable support and strategies for managing your emotions.
Are you searching for a support system that will help you come to terms with your loss, cope with your complicated emotions, and find new meaning in life?
Head to CareSpace today and find all the support, info, and expert advice that you need for successful grief management by the members and experts on the GriefShare support community.