How to Cope With Parental Loss
Dealing with parental loss requires self-care and help. Learn how to cope with parental loss and grieve the loss in the best way you can.
Have you recently suffered the loss of a parent?
Parental loss often constitutes one of the most difficult events in a person’s life. Often, it’s difficult for people to imagine their lives without their parents, and it may seem difficult to go on without their help and guidance.
If you’ve lost a parent, we extend to you our sincerest condolences. Here at Lonestar Cremation, we know that death is always hard, and it’s especially difficult when it happens to someone you’ve loved.
We also know that everyone grieves differently. Yet, many people find certain actions to be helpful.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of advice for coping with losing a parent. Keep reading to learn more about navigating this life event.
Be Kind to Yourself
Your life has changed immeasurably and permanently through parental loss. As a result, throughout your grieving process, you should remember to be kind to yourself.
Everyone mourns the loss of their loved ones in a different way. At times, you might feel incredibly frustrated and angry. During others, you may experience deep sadness. Remember that there is no right way to grieve. Grief is a very personal journey, and it’s normal and natural to feel your emotions.
Try practicing being kind to yourself in your everyday life. If you feel on some days that your responsibilities are too much, don’t blame yourself. Instead, find ways to take breaks and care for yourself. Call on others for help if necessary. If you’re feeling emotions you don’t expect or can’t explain, be gentle with yourself and give yourself the space to feel them.
Know the 5 Stages of Grief
Grief might look a lot differently than you expect it to. As people heal from the death of a loved one, they often experience emotions they don’t anticipate.
That’s why many people find it helpful to become familiar with the 5 stages of grief. Many people go back and forth through these stages and might experience them at different times. Still, knowing about them will give you a framework for the emotions you’re feeling and may also help you contextualize the reactions of others.
The 5 stages of grief are as follows:
When you’re in the denial phase, you may have difficulty accepting that your parent has passed. In the anger stage, you might channel your emotions into anger toward others. During the bargaining phase, you may think “If only….” statements, thinking, “If only I had done ____, they wouldn’t be gone.”
In the depression phase, you may feel heavy, hazy, or overwhelmed. Once you reach the acceptance stage, you may start to appreciate the good times you had with the person.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
If you have others in your family going through the same situation, do your best not to compare your journey to those of others.
As mentioned above, everyone’s path toward healing appears different. Some people might be able to get through the funeral and cremation process without crying, while others weep. Both are completely natural responses to the situation.
Likewise, after the ceremony, some members of your family may go through the stages of grief at different times. Your journey will always be your own. Just because it looks different from your brother’s or sister’s doesn’t mean it’s not a valid form of grief.
Talk to Someone
Finding someone with whom to process this major life event often serves as a fantastic way to cope. This can be anyone you trust. Some people find it helpful to seek out the company of others who have been through loss as well.
Many people also choose to seek out the help of counselors at this time. These professionals spend years studying human psychology, and many of them specialize in grief therapy. This type of therapy is meant to help you through your journey as you go about your everyday life.
It’s especially important to seek out a therapist if you sense your grief slipping into depression, start experiencing suicidal thoughts, or fear your anger phase may have negative ramifications in your life. While it’s completely normal to experience emotions after losing a parent, it’s also important for you to take care of yourself.
A good therapist will give you the tools to do this while providing a non-judgemental place for you to express what you’re going through.
Don’t Let People Rush Your Grief
One of the hardest aspects of losing a parent might be the fact that other people’s lives seem to go on. You may feel that it’s difficult or wrong to go on with life while your world has turned upside down.
Yet, you may even feel pressured by other people to get through your grief. If this happens, remember that your journey is your own. It’s important for you to process your emotions on your own time. Don’t let anyone else pressure you to do anything before you’re ready for it.
Develop a New Relationship with Your Parent
Your parent may no longer physically be here, but that doesn’t mean they’re not still alive in your heart and in your memories.
In fact, people sometimes find it helpful to view their relationship with their parents not as over but rather changed. They will still always be with you, and it might be helpful to sift through some of the good memories. You may even find yourself growing grateful for the time you had with them and the time you shared together.
Are You Coping with Parental Loss?
If you are coping with parental loss, you know how difficult it is to cope with the loss of a parent.
The death of a parent often feels like the world has been torn out from under you. Many people, though, find it helpful to be kind to themselves, know the 5 stages of grief, not compare themselves to others, talk to someone, and develop a new relationship with their parents.
If you’ve just lost someone and are in need of cremation services, we can help. Our professional staff helps you navigate the process of honoring your deceased loved one’s wishes and comes alongside you in the grieving process. Start here today.