Common Myths About Grief

Myth: A person should be finished grieving in a few months.

There is no timetable for grief. While intense symptoms usually subside within six months to a year, it often takes two or more years to reach a new equilibrium. When the loss is sudden, it can take longer.

Myth: Tears are a sign of weakness.

According to Alan Wolfelt of the Center for Loss and Life transition, “Crying is nature’s way of releasing internal tension…and allows the mourner to communicate a need to be comforted.”

Myth: It will only bring more pain to mention the name of the person who has died.

Telling stories, looking through photo albums, sharing memories, help someone grieving know that love is not forgotten.

Myth: Death and grief are contagious.

Bereaved parents are sometimes avoided because they represent the worst fear of every mother and father: that “if it happens to your child, it could happen to mine.” And, in a society of couples, widows and widowers often experience the feeling of being left out.

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