When someone leaves us, either because that person dies or because that person abandons us, there is an unbearable emotional pain we have to deal with. Our first reaction is denial. We refuse to accept what just happened. After, we recognize what happened, and that denial turns to anger with God, ourselves, and others. After that, the grief and emotional soreness push us to negotiate with destiny itself. We ask why? What could we have done better? What can we change in return for our life as it was? We’ll do anything to seek a compromise between what we just lost, the pain, and reality. When we realize that life does not always go the way we want, we become depressed, discouraged, and sad, hopelessness overcomes our motivations, and our morality goes low. We want to be isolated. We don’t want to see or talk to anyone. We seek to be apart from everyone. We only want to relive our memories over and over. After a while, we understand that there was nothing we could have done to prevent what happened, and finally, we start the process of accepting our new reality. After accepting our new reality, we compromise and start building and embracing our new future.
The grieving process is a normal process of dealing with losing a loved one, either to death, abandonment, or separation. Denying or hiding our emotions makes the healing process longer and unendurable. Acknowledging how important someone was in our lives, understanding that the person is no longer there, and recognizing that such a person will always be part of our memories, but not our future is a healthy healing process. It gives us the wisdom and strength we need to start redesigning our new future.
Iberkis Faltas, Ph.D.
Book: On Death and Dying by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.