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Myths vs. Facts about Grief

Posted by on Jun 16, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

Dealing with the loss of a loved one can be incredibly difficult. It is a part of life that leaves pretty much everyone, appropriately put, at a loss – we don’t know which way is the right way to deal with it. The truth is that there is no “right way” of dealing with death because everyone processes it differently, and that’s okay. There are several myths that we sometimes tell ourselves in the face of grief which aren’t necessarily the case:

Myth: Ignoring the pain will make it easier and go away faster.
Fact: Pushing your pain to the backburner or ignoring it completely will, in fact, only make it last longer – and make it much worse to deal with in the long run. In order to truly heal, we must face our loss head on and actively deal with it.
Myth: It’s necessary to “stay strong” when dealing with death.
Fact: Feeling sad, lonely, or lost are natural responses to loss. Crying isn’t a sign of weakness! You don’t owe it to anyone, even your friends and family, to put up a brave front. This is your pain, and showing it can help them help you.
Myth: If you don’t cry, it means you’re not really sad.
Fact: Crying is a normal reaction to sorrow, but it isn’t the “right” or only one. Those who don’t cry may very well be feeling the loss just as deeply as those who do, they just show it in a different way.
Myth: Grief should last about a year.
Fact: There isn’t a right or wrong time frame for your grieving process. Each person goes through the experience differently, and it doesn’t mean anyone is stronger than another based on how long it takes.

Dealing with loss is painful any way you slice it, but we can take comfort in knowing that there is no wrong method of coping. The key to healthy grieving is letting yourself feel, in order to truly heal.

Preneed Services

Posted by on Jan 1, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

We get it; nobody wants to think about their death. While it may be a grim subject, there are many important questions that need to be addressed in case the time comes. What are you doing to make sure that you are properly remembered? Is your family going to struggle with the payment of your funeral?

Sorting these things out now can help ease the stress on your family at a time when they need the stress the least. That is why preneed service exists for your funeral needs. Funeral homes are able to get everything taken care of before you pass on, lightening the load for your family.

The Holidays

Posted by on Dec 18, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Grief around the Holidays can be a hard thing to deal with. If you lost a loved one, it can seem like your time honored family Holiday traditions will never be the same. While your Holidays never will be quite the same, that does not mean you should let your grief take over you and your family’s Holiday season. In a time of much grief within a family, the natural reaction would be to separate from a situation that would make you upset. Some people react by skipping Holiday events like Christmas or Thanksgiving. However, the more healing thing to do is to gather the family together to heal together. Share stories. Laugh. Cry. Remember the one you lost in whatever way you want, but whatever happens stick together as a family. It won’t be easy, but the love a family has for one another is enough to keep everyone together in a hard time.

The Five Stages of Grief

Posted by on Jun 17, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

For our inaugural blog entry, we’ll be looking at some of the common ways people cope with grief, based on the Kübler-Ross model outlined in the famous book On Death and Dying. Please note: all people are different, and not everyone will experience these stages the same exact way. We want to stress that there is no wrong way to grieve! However, these stages are a good overall guide for what to expect in the event of a loss – or if you need to help a friend or family member through their own losses.

The stages, in order, are as follows:

Denial

Usually, the first stage is shock and denial. Numbness may set in after a traumatic loss, and the whole situation may feel surreal. Do not mistake these feelings (or lack of feelings) for a lack of caring! This is a coping mechanism to shut one’s self away from the reality of the situation, and it may take a while for the true weight of the loss to sink in.

Anger

The second stage of grief is anger. This anger could be directed inward, out at others, or at God or the universe. People will question why they have to be the ones carry such a heavy burden. If you know someone dealing with loss, try your best to be as nonjudgmental as possible, even if their anger seems misplaced or irrational.

Bargaining

This stage may include thoughts about what could have been done to stop the loss from happening – even though the situation was probably completely out of the person’s control. It is good to try to find resolution during this time (if it’s yourself), or to help your friend/family member find resolution, as constant self-incrimination and guilt could be damaging to the overall healing process.

Depression

The next stage is depression. Those dealing with loss may wonder why they need to go on. All things, even those once held dear, lose meaning, and the person may spend a lot of time alone working through the cloud of regret, fear, and uncertainty that has finally started to settle in. While a difficult phase, dealing with these feelings is perfectly normal, and is even an early form of the true acceptance that will come later.

But, even if things look dark at this point, there is hope and healing just on the horizon…

Acceptance

The last stage – and the light at the end of the long tunnel – is acceptance. Those who have felt loss are now able to work through the process in a calm way and finally come to terms with what happened. Life is never the same after loss, of course. Many who have dealt with such things often report that they are able to live normally, make new connections with people, and feel joy, but it’s a “new normal.”

However, even if things can never be exactly the same again, it is completely possible to heal, come to acceptance with the past, and once again look forward with hope! Healing is always, always a possibility! No matter how dark things seem, there is a point where you will be able to look back on the memories of your loved one with happiness and fondness, not just crushing sadness.

At McMahan’s Funeral Home, we always meet people right where they are, no matter what step they are currently on in the journey through grief.