21st July 2022
Over the years as a bereavement counsellor in Harrogate, I have worked with many men and women who have recently lost their spouse or partner. And I know how uniquely painful it can be – to lose the person who was closer to you than anyone, for them to all of a sudden no longer be in your life.
Working through this pain takes time, and things will never quite be the same again, but I can assure you that reaching a better place is absolutely possible. There are many widows out there, and they do manage to enjoy fulfilling, peaceful lives. If you are someone who has recently lost a partner or spouse, this blog post gives you three things to keep in mind as you go through this challenging time.
Give Yourself Time To Grieve
To start with, you have to accept that there will be shock, denial, and a raft of other emotions, which always vary from person to person. You may be guilty, angry, fearful, confused, or just deeply depressed. All of these emotions are entirely valid, and form an important part of the grieving process. Not letting yourself feel them means that you will only delay the grieving process until later. Giving yourself that time to mourn the loss of your partner or spouse is so important in this sense; it means you are actively expressing your thoughts and feelings and allowing yourself to heal.
Look After Your Body
When someone extremely important to you dies, the grief that you feel can be so profound that you forget to take care of the mini tasks required to stay healthy. A lot of people struggle with sleep, for example, or stop eating healthily, or perhaps stop eating entirely. Maybe they drink less water, and stop exercising. Of course, falling behind on one’s physical health is natural after such a monumental event, but staying on top of this aspect of your life is particularly important. Maintaining a healthy schedule won’t prevent you from feeling difficult emotions, but it will prevent you from feeling worse.
Seek Support When You’re Ready
I understand that looking after yourself all on your own after your partner or spouse has died is never easy. Many find it impossible. In these moments, when you feel hopeless and alone, reaching out is the best thing you can do. Family and friends can help with small chores that need to be done, giving you more space to grieve and do whatever feels right. That proximity to those who care about you is a valuable feeling.
However, I know that not everyone feels comfortable expressing their emotions to family and friends, nor is doing so always possible for some people. If you are struggling with the death of a partner or spouse and need a place to talk, my practice offers you a completely confidential, non-judgemental space to receive bespoke bereavement counselling in Harrogate and online.