These five tips for dealing with grief over the Christmas holidays are from Jane Galbraith, author of Baby Boomers Face Grief: Survival and Recovery.
This author and nurse knows firsthand what it’s like to grieve during Christmas. One of the first things she encourages people to do is share love with the people who are with you today, because…
“The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone,” said Harriett Beecher Stowe.
If you love someone, dear readers, then tell them! If you appreciate, value, cherish someone – share how you feel. Then when you have to deal with death, your grieving may be a little lighter.
For more advice from Galbraith about baby boomers and grief, read Baby Boomers Face Grief: Survival and Recovery.
And, here are her tips for grieving over the holidays.
Dealing With Grief at Christmas – 5 Tips From a Baby Boomer
Guest Post – Jane Galbraith
The Christmas holidays create even more pain to those who are suffering grief from the loss of a loved one. It is a painful reminder of those who are no longer in our lives on a daily basis. What should be a festive and happy time does not feel like it for the grief stricken.
Baby boomers have inherited the “stiff upper lip” of our parent’s generation, and have also been inundated with expressions such as “get on with life” and “closure” and “getting back to normal.” None of these expressions or attitudes helps the grief stricken, especially during the Christmas holiday season. There is an enormous amount of pressure to act “normal” during these holiday times. This seems like an insurmountable task if you’re grieving during the holidays. It’s exhausting.
5 Deal With the Loss of a Loved One at Christmas
1. Give yourself permission to feel whatever it is you feel. If journaling or using a support group or special person that helps, make sure you take advantage of them during holiday times.
2. Keep up any traditions that your loved one started, and that you can continue. This will help you honor your lost loved one. If you’re grieving the loss of your spouse, learn how to meet new friends for widows.
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3. Try to establish new traditions if you’re grieving during the holidays, which make you and your family feel good about the holiday. Include new activities that everyone enjoys.
4. Talk about your loved one with friends and family and encourage them to share favorite stories with you.
5. Take care of yourself when you’re dealing with grief at Christmas. Anything that helps you with healing after loss should be done, such as a long walk, massage, listening to music and getting enough sleep.
Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are difficult, but there are ways to get through them without hiding from the pain. Even though the holiday may not be as happy as last year, the day passes and you do survive!
For more tips, read Starting Over in Your 60s – After Your Husband Dies.
If you have any thoughts on grieving over the holiday season, please comment below…
Jane Galbraith, BScN, R.N., is the author of Baby Boomers Face Grief – Survival and Recovery.