Because, in the midst of COVID-19, funerals at funeral homes in Clinton Township, MI are anything but traditional, being limited to 10 or less people, which makes them more private and offers less in-person comfort and support, you may discover that you’re having difficulty expressing grief for the loss of your loved one.
In some cases, it is normal to temporarily suppress grief after the death of a loved one. There are many things that need to be done when someone dies, and that means pulling your emotional act together enough to get them taken care of in a timely manner.
You may also temporarily suppress your grief because it’s too overwhelming in the moment and you need a brief respite from its effects.
Both of these types of grief suppression are normal and healthy ways to handle intense grief because they involve recognition that you need to take care of yourself at that moment in time.
However, making a habit of not expressing grief each time it surfaces is unhealthy, and can result in health problems, emotional problems, and mental problems like depression and anxiety.
When grief is suppressed instead of experienced, no matter how painful that may be, it becomes incomplete grief. There are several signs of incomplete grief.
One sign is irritability or anger that gets worse with time and can erupt into an explosion or violence. When you habitually don’t express grief, things build up inside with no outlet or expression.
Your body, mind, and soul has limits to how long you can do this until it becomes too big and too much to handle or keep suppressed. Usually the trigger that lets it all out is insignificant, and often observers will wonder why the reaction is so extreme in comparison to the trigger.
Another sign of incomplete grief is long-term obsession with missing your loved one.
It is normal in the first few weeks or months to think a lot about the death of your loved one and for their loss to hurt deeply. Your will find yourself repeatedly reviewing your relationship with and death of your loved one in great detail during these first weeks and months as your process your loss.
However, if you get stuck in a repetitive reviewing loop, you will not be able to move forward in the grief process, and you may find yourself shutting down when you hit certain points in the review where you feel guilt or regrets and it’s too late to fix them.
Hyperalertness and fear of loss is also a sign of incomplete grief. They are characterized by continuous anxiety and the pervasive feeling that nothing’s safe, everything’s fragile, and everyone is vulnerable. As a result, you become hypersensitive to everything and develop an obsessive need to always be prepared for the worst possible outcome.
Apathy, numbness, and low-grade depression are additional signs of incomplete grief. Apathy becomes apparent when you no longer take pleasure in or enjoy doing things that you once enjoyed. In fact, you may feel as though you really don’t care about anything anymore.
Numbness is a blunted emotional reaction that makes it hard to imagine feeling anything at all, no matter whether it’s happy or sad.
Low-grade depression is characterized by a lack of energy, a sense of hopelessness, and dark thoughts that you find persist over an extended period of time.
Utilizing grief resources such as counseling and therapy are an excellent way to resolve incomplete grief.