When a Loved One Has Died

Breathe. Pray. Cry. Your tears can be healing and are helpful expressions of grief.

Pay attention to your own needs (including food, pastoral care, prayer, etc.), and care for yourself (perhaps simply stepping outside for fresh air).

Read, as you are able, the bereavement literature. See recommendations on pages 18 – 20. If you have contacted Good Samaritan, anticipate forthcoming booklets related to grief: Journeying Through Grief.

Give yourself space and time to grieve. It is not unusual for grief to feel fresh and raw for over a year.

Acknowledge that everybody grieves differently, including children. Preschoolers see death as temporary and impersonal; 5-9 year olds see death as final, but also perhaps scary (associated with nightmares); tweens and teens search for meaning in death and life. It’s important to be honest and direct with children.

See the Bereavement Web Link: Grief Resource Books / Books for Children – specifically for helping children deal with their grief.