It is a common thing for an individual who has gone through a traumatic encounter to struggle with frightening memories, upsetting emotions, feelings of disconnect or feelings of looming danger. Whenever one is traumatized, it will take awhile before the person overcomes the pain and feels secure once again. Whether one experienced the trauma years ago or even the other day, such a person can still recover from it, pick up oneself and move on. Nearly every person experiences grief at one point in life. It is that feeling which an individual has after the loss of someone they love. It takes time to deal with the emotions and cope with the aftermath of this realization.
In my growth from childhood through teenage, into youth and finally adulthood, I never lost any loved one. My very first loss occurred a few weeks ago when I lost my mother in law. The fact that I never had an earlier experience with death does not help nor hinder my ability to cope with stress or death of somebody close to me later in life. However, this does not imply that I have nothing to discuss concerning how one copes with such grief later on in life.
How an individual deals with the loss of a loved one may be hindered by life events that the individual is experiencing at the time. The bereaved person might have lots of issues that demand his or her time in the attempt to cope with the sudden loss. There may be certain practical issues that may require the individual’s input. One example may be sorting out the deceased’s estates or even registering the death. These issues can cause distress and may make it even harder to adjust or make a decision about what to do. Thinking styles and patterns too dictate how one copes with the loss. Certain people can handle difficulties with ease while others might not have a smooth sail. Most people become vulnerable during such times and feel quite low. This moment might remind one of previous experiences, sad memories and feelings. It is vital to recognize these unhelpful thoughts so as to deal effectively with the grief.
Behavioral explanations are also said to influence how one copes with an unexpected death of a loved one. It is not uncommon to observe that one avoids certain places or even situations that remind them of the loss. The loss of a loved one may sometimes trigger a change in how one relates to others. It is most likely that a combination of the above factors influence how one copes with the experience of bereavement in reality. In addition, the circumstances surrounding the death and the context in which the bereavement occurred can influence how difficult or easy it is to handle the loss.
How long one knew the deceased, the relationship they shared, whether the loss was sudden or not, how old the person was, and how the person passed on are some of the things that may affect how easy it would be to deal with the death of a loved one. It is also said that a traumatic experience in an individual during childhood can have a long-lasting and severe effect on that person. When this is not addressed soon enough and resolved, the sense of fear is carried over into adulthood and might be a springboard into further trauma.
My childhood upbringing in the Christian faith has a lot to do with how I cope up with the loss of a loved one. The belief in the faith that establishes that those who are believers and are saved from the sinful world go to Heaven when they die has influenced my way of dealing with the loss of a loved one. Death is some sort of passageway for eternal life. According to the teachings, those that are wicked will not get a chance to experience eternal life, only the righteous will be rewarded by going to heaven. Because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, death was finally conquered making it possible for Christians to experience eternal life, not just in the present moment but also in the future.
I also believe in living life to the fullest. This keeps me calm and helps me cope with the grief arising from the death of someone close. My guiding principle, which is also a naked truth, is that nothing will ever cause the grief you are experiencing to go away, instead, it may go on for a very long time. The only joy that remains hence is to enjoy life to the fullest. Christianity offers me comfort in the belief that God is omnipresent and will be there for me at all times, to see me through and sustain me.
In my opinion, one’s ability to cope with the stress of losing someone later in life is not only influenced by the individual’s early experiences with death but several other factors also come into play. What’s important is that, whether the bereavement happened several years back or the other day, there’s a chance that one can heal and keep going.