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Common emotions and reactions you may have when grieving

Common emotions and reactions you (or your family) may experience


Grief is a normal reaction to loss and it shows up in ways you might not expect.

If you’ve …
- been angry with doctors or nurses for not doing enough
- been angry with yourself for not taking more heroic steps
- been sleeping too much or not enough
- noticed a change in appetite
- felt that no-one understands what you’re going through
- felt that friends should call more or call less or leave you alone or invite you along more often
- bought things you didn’t need
- considered selling everything and moving
- had headaches, upset stomachs, weakness, lethargy, more aches and pains
- been unbearably lonely or depressed
- been crabby
- cried for no apparent reason
- found yourself obsessed with thoughts of the deceased
- been forgetful, confused, uncharacteristically absent-minded
- panicked over little things
- felt guilty about things you have or haven’t done
- gone to the shops every day
- forgotten why you went somewhere
- called friends and talked for a long time
- called friends and wanted to hang up after only a brief conversation
- not wanted to attend social functions you usually enjoyed
- been angry at being left alone
- found yourself unable to concentrate on written material
- been unable to remember what you just read

These are all common reactions to grief; you may have experienced one, a few, many, or none of the above. Grief is a very complex experience, one like you have never experienced before. Everyone experiences grief differently. You will never forget the person who died, but your life will again become ‘alright’ although it will be different. Take care of yourself.

If you have noticed problems with your physical health it is important to check with your doctor.
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