Grief and loss are a part of life, but it is not easier to accept them. Some of us grieve over the loss of our loved ones, while others grieve over the loss of their childhood or trauma they faced at some point in their lives. Through it all, we find our ways to cope with continuing living.
Although we all have different coping methods, we tend to suffer through similar misconceptions about emotion. These misconceptions are generally accepted or offered as helpful advice; however, they always hinder the recovery process rather than facilitate it.
This blog addresses some of the most common myths about grief to help you recognize them so you don’t suffer more than you already are.
Common Myths about Grief
Myth #1: Grief is Linear
People mistakenly believe that grieving and recovery is linear process. They expect grief to slowly dissipate over time and get frustrated when the intensity does not follow the expected pattern. The truth is that grief has no pattern.
It comes and goes like waves, brushing softly against our toes occasionally but enveloping us like a tsunami on others. Grieving is a process unique for each of us, and we need to give ourselves time and energy for recovery to happen.
Myth #2: Grief is the Same for All Losses
Equating grief is always counterproductive, as is trying to compare different types of grief. The grief over losing a parent is different from the grief over losing a child. However, it also isn’t healthy to gaslight yourself or others for giving time to your grief just because another person has it worse.
Myth #3: You Won’t Experience Grief Once you Resolve it
The unfortunate reality about grief is that we don’t completely get rid of it, so the belief that we will fully recover and never experience it again is false. This myth is also illogical. Most grief-inducing events are significant enough to leave a lasting impact on our minds.
Given the depth of their impact, it is natural to conclude that their aftereffects will remain even after we have healed. Hence, there is nothing wrong with getting the sudden urge to grieve over a loss you have already recovered from.
Myth #4: Grief will Go Away with Time
Time heals all wounds is possibly one of the least accurate statements of all time. Time does not heal; we simply become more accustomed to the existence of our grief and gain the ability to continue living while we work on ways to recover.
Suppressing your grief or getting frustrated over it not changing with time will only make matters worse.
Myth #5: Grief Needs to be Private at All Times
People are often expected only to grieve privately and are ostracized if they cannot maintain public appearances. However, as mentioned above, grief is neither controlled nor systematic. You must not pressure yourself into pushing your grief away until you lock yourself inside your room.
Acknowledge your grief in public and private spaces and permit yourself to do what it takes to recover.
I hope that this blog helped you better understand the common myths about grief and helps you find a healthy path to recovery. You can also check out my books about grief and caregiving and read about how I found ways to manage the path to acceptance and healing.