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Dealing with grief is not easy, and let no one ever tell you that losing a marriage, friendship, lover, pet. etc is not grief worthy.  These are losses. and they are in their own way deaths, and as such must be worked through the same as a physical death would so here are the seven stages of grief as posted on http://www.recover-from-grief.com/7-stages-of-grief.html This is a very good list, but keep in mind that grief does not always follow the seven stages in order, you can get stuck in one, you can bounce back and forth between several, and you may not experience all of them but only a few, your grief is as unique as you are, don't let others tell you that you are wrong to feel what you feel because they are not you.  If anyone is reading this and  finds themself stuck for a prolonged period of time in the anger, depression, denial, or pain/guilt phases I recommend you get help of some kind, either a friend you can confide in, a counselor or clergyman/woman who can help you over the rough spots, and if you want you can always write to me here on livejournal (I will write you back, and I will keep it confidential)

 I recommended in a previous entry to hold a funeral for the person in your own mind, allow yourself to bury the relationship to lay it to rest, to let it go.  This may sound strange but it will help you to accept the finality of it, hoping for reconciliation is somewhat counterproductive I find to the healing process which is why I recommend this step.  Take them off your contact lists, phone lists, Skype contacts etc. you may want to do this all at once, or gradually (I do better with gradually myself, one contact list/phone list at a time over several months), DO NOT I REPEAT DO NOT go to their FB, or other pages, don't drive by their house, call them, text them. or otherwise contact them in anyway... don't hang out where you know you might run into them, or even go to places you used to go to if you can avoid it.  I do not grill friends, or family as to how they are doing (because how they are doing is none of my business).

Healing takes time, here are a few things I do during the healing process to help me get over the worst of the hurt.  Be kind to yourself, treat yourself to a class you have always wanted to take, dance lessons, photography, arts and crafts, etc. , take yourself to movies, and out to a nice lunch, get a new hairdo, a makeover do whatever makes YOU feel good.  Treat you the way you would like someone else to treat you, with respect and loving kindness, you are worth it, you are worthy.  I like my alone time, some people like to do these things with friends, I do to some extent but I find that sometimes I am just as happy doing these things alone.  Volunteer at a shelter, on a children's cancer ward, at a nursing home, for habitat for humanity, or for animal rescue, etc.  I find this step really helps, because for me at least helping others feels good, it makes my heart happy to help others,and it takes me out of myself to focus on others and become globally/locally minded and productive instead of moping around feeling sorry for myself and achieving nothing at all.  Listen to music about surving breakups (or general happy music) and sing it, loudly....I do not care if you can not carry a tune in a bucket, singing heals the soul...Some of my favorite break up songs include "I'm still standing" by Elton John, "Since You've Been Gone" by Kelly Clarkson  (here is a link to one of my favorite performances of this song    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7LgVDV3Nxs   ) Let me tell you I belt these things out when I need to, oh yeah baby, lol, feels good.

Be good to you, be kind to you, and know that you are worthy of love, and all manner of good things...don't beat yourself up because it will not help, if you made mistakes learn from them, but do not go back to your ex lover.friend. partner begging for forgiveness for things you did, or think you did wrong, if it is well and truly over.  If you must write a letter, but do not send it, wait at least 9 months before you even contemplate sending it, longer if you can, and then reread it.  If you still feel the same as when you wrote the letter, and you feel you really must, then send it, but do not do it as an attempt to bring about a reconcilliation with the person, but to clear your own conscience if need be, with no expectation of a response from the other person (remember you had a funeral for this person so how can they respond, right?).  Make yourself the best version of yourself that you can be, seriously work on yourself.  Don't worry about the judgement of others because the only person you have to face at the end of the day is the one who looks back at you from the mirror every day.  Be true to that person and take care of them....because you are loved more than you know, more than you can imagine.

Here are the 7 stages of grief I mentioned earlier, do not forget the caveat I set forth previously, remember your grief is as unique as you.  Pax to any who find this page, and more so to those who really need it, those who are dealing with grief, and not sure how to get through it.  A wise friend once told me "if you can't get through the day, get through the hour, if you can't get through the hour get through the half hour, if you can not get through the half hour just get through the next minute."  baby steps until you make it through....baby steps.

Here is the grief model we call the 7 Stages of Grief:

    You will probably react to learning of the loss with numbed disbelief. You may deny the reality of the loss at some level, in order to avoid the pain. Shock provides emotional protection from being overwhelmed all at once. This may last for weeks.

  2. PAIN & GUILT-
    As the shock wears off, it is replaced with the suffering of unbelievable pain. Although excruciating and almost unbearable, it is important that you experience the pain fully, and not hide it, avoid it or escape from it with alcohol or drugs.

    You may have guilty feelings or remorse over things you did or didn't do with your loved one. Life feels chaotic and scary during this phase.

    Frustration gives way to anger, and you may lash out and lay unwarranted blame for the death on someone else. Please try to control this, as permanent damage to your relationships may result. This is a time for the release of bottled up emotion.

    You may rail against fate, questioning "Why me?" You may also try to bargain in vain with the powers that be for a way out of your despair ("I will never drink again if you just bring him back")

    Just when your friends may think you should be getting on with your life, a long period of sad reflection will likely overtake you. This is a normal stage of grief, so do not be "talked out of it" by well-meaning outsiders. Encouragement from others is not helpful to you during this stage of grieving.

    During this time, you finally realize the true magnitude of your loss, and it depresses you. You may isolate yourself on purpose, reflect on things you did with your lost one, and focus on memories of the past. You may sense feelings of emptiness or despair.

    More 7 stages of grief...

    As you start to adjust to life without your dear one, your life becomes a little calmer and more organized. Your physical symptoms lessen, and your "depression" begins to lift slightly.

    As you become more functional, your mind starts working again, and you will find yourself seeking realistic solutions to problems posed by life without your loved one. You will start to work on practical and financial problems and reconstructing yourself and your life without him or her.

    During this, the last of the seven stages in this grief model, you learn to accept and deal with the reality of your situation. Acceptance does not necessarily mean instant happiness. Given the pain and turmoil you have experienced, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled YOU that existed before this tragedy. But you will find a way forward.

    You will start to look forward and actually plan things for the future. Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost loved one without pain; sadness, yes, but the wrenching pain will be gone. You will once again anticipate some good times to come, and yes, even find joy again in the experience of living.

    You have made it through the 7 stages of grief.



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