Kicking the elephant OUT of the room
Let’s start talking about death and grief and send the elephant out the door.
To enable this, society requires an open dialogue that provides education and empathy regarding the true reality of the grief journey. A shift in the public’s perception would be so helpful for all who are grieving.
Grief changes shape but it never ends. There will always be triggers that bring us back to sorrow. In these moments our instinct is to reach out and share our emotions with friends and family. Ironically, those we thought we could lean on to hold our space are often the first people to push us away.
There is a HUGE elephant in the room.
We don’t talk and they don’t ask.
We learn to play the ‘game’.
You know the game upon which I speak?
“I’m fine.” “All is good.” “I’m strong.” “I’m independent.” “I’ve moved on.”
Yet, secretly, no matter how fabulous we are doing; most of us have searched out a private online community where we chat with strangers who allow us to cry, remember, share fears and welcome our emotions with no preconceived judgement.
Societal timelines create increased loneliness
Private social media groups abound with frustrated members who recant stories of relatives, friends and even colleagues that comment on OUR grieving time frame and suggest we “move on”.
Society tells US when it’s time to stop grieving!!!
What’s the harm?
People often gives us an allotted timeline to heal. Does 6 months or 1 year ring a bell? Rather than risk condemnation, the bereaved accept this unrealistic expectation and feel too embarrassed to reach out for support. This forced isolation often leads to a increased sense of loneliness.
Loneliness is concerning and can negatively spiral into many health concerns.
It takes a village.
Changing the dialogue regarding death and grieving is a monumental task. I value your encouragement, help, comments…
As individuals we are strong and independent women.
United, we are a FORCE.
If you need encouragement, observe how similar educational campaigns have changed societal perspectives regarding mental health, infertility and race.
To begin, we need to open up & let others know the pain we experience when they shut us down. Please share a time someone told you to stop grieving. I promise to keep it anonymous.