The loss of a family member is always difficult, but when the relationship was troubled, it can be more complicated. You may have complex feelings about the loss. You might be uncomfortable with how the relationship was when the person died. You may feel things were left unsaid and wish you’d had a more time to work through some of the challenges.
You’re not alone. Here are some strategies for navigating your grief when your relationship was less than ideal:
- Find someone to talk to. This may be a friend or family member who understands the situation and can help you work through your feelings. It might also be helpful to seek professional counseling. A grief counselor has the experience to help you navigate this difficult time and direct you to a support group where you can find additional help if necessary.
- Consider rituals or activities to help you work through “unfinished business. ” You might find it helpful to write a letter to the person who has died, expressing things you were never able to say in person. Journaling can also be helpful as a way to put your emotions onto paper. Sometimes writing things down can help you gain a new perspective.
- Be gentle with yourself. Make sure to practice good self-care, get enough sleep and eat a healthy diet. Don’t worry about expectations about what you “should” be feeling, and remember that grief is unique to each individual. Instead of berating yourself about how you could have handled situations differently, treat yourself as gently as you’d treat another person experiencing this kind of conflicted grief.
At Mountain View, we’re more than just a funeral home. Since 1989, we’ve reached out to members of our community with grief support services that help people in a safe, supportive environment. We also provide aftercare to the bereaved at no cost. Visit our website to learn more and find resources to help you through this difficult time. You can also call us at (253) 218-1012 to learn about our facilities, preplanning and all the ways in which we serve the community.