Losing loved ones is always a painful experience and overcoming such trauma is never easy. Healing from grief understandably takes time, which can sometimes be frustrating for those experiencing it. The main reason you may become frustrated in such a situation is a lack of knowledge about the struggle you are undergoing.
As someone who has faced several facets of grief, I empathize with you. Therefore, I am writing this blog to give you a brief explanation of why your heart holds on to grief.
Why Healing from Grief Takes Time
The first step in healing from grief is permitting yourself to experience it. The key issue is that society has put a time limit on recovery, and everyone feels bound to respect that limit, ignoring the need to continue grieving in the process.
The explanation provided here will help you understand why such a practice is counterproductive and will only cause further suffering.
1. Grief is a Complex Set of Emotions
I have often mentioned the complexity of grief in my books and blogs, and there is a reason for it. Grief isn’t a single emotion; it is a cluster of emotions you will feel when you suffer through loss or trauma. Sadness, anger, frustration, emptiness are all a part of the grieving process, and they don’t always hit you in an orderly fashion.
The chaos of emotions takes time to settle down, at least to an extent where you can begin to comprehend them.
2. The Stages of Grief
Although the following stages don’t apply to all forms of grief, knowing about them can explain why it takes so much time to process everything.
The very first reaction to trauma or loss is denial. People often enter a state of disbelief where they try to minimize the depth of their predicament or refuse to accept that an event has occurred.
Once it becomes difficult to deny reality, the person is forced to confront the situation, which may cause them to become angry. This anger can take on many forms, but in most cases, people question why they are the ones to face misfortune.
After the person exhausts their anger, they become desperate and turn things around. This stage is sometimes only a mental exercise, but it also involves action on other occasions.
Once it becomes clear that avoiding the situation is impossible, the person slips into depression. They lose the will to carry on with their routines and, in extreme circumstances, may even become suicidal.
When people resolve the struggle of all the previous stages, they move to acceptance and inch closer to recovery.
While I have mentioned stages in a linear order, they don’t always follow this pattern. You may move to stage three but fall back onto the second before directly falling into stage four. You will need to be patient and prioritize your well-being.
3. Unnecessary Suppression
Lastly, you may unconsciously suppress your grief because you feel pressured to return to routines. This decision is never healthy and will only elongate the time you need for healing from grief.
Overall, healing from grief takes time because there is too much going on in your mind for easy resolution. I have penned down a more detailed account of my experience with grief and caregiving, so you can check out my books to further understand your grief.