Misconceptions of Grief

Misconception #1
Grief and Mourning are the same thing.

Grief is the internal container. It holds all of your thought, feelings inside yourself.
Mourning is when you take the grief you have inside and express it outside of yourself. Another way of defining it is “Grief Gone Public”
Misconception #2
Grief and mourning progress in predictable, orderly stages.

You may find yourself trying to self prescribe your grief experience and force yourself to be in a “stage”. Sometimes your emotions may follow each other within a short period of time; or at other times two or more emotions may be present simultaneously. Remember -do not try to determine where “you should” be. Just allow yourself to be naturally where you are in the process. Everyone mourns in different ways.
Misconception #3
You should move away from grief not toward it
Our Society often encourages prematurely moving away from grief instead of toward it. Do not buy into statements such as “You should move on”, or “they would want you to go on with your life”, or “get back to normal”, or “You should be over it by now”. Masking or moving away from your grief creates anxiety, confusion and depression. You must continually remind yourself that leaning toward, not away from the pain will facilitate eventual healing.  
Misconception #4
Tears of Grief are only a sign of weakness
Tears of grief are often associated with personal inadequacy and weakness. The worst thing you can do, however, is to allow this judgment to prevent you from crying. Don’t buy into the advice you might receive such as “Tears won’t bring him/her back” or “he or she wouldn’t want you to cry”. Crying is nature’s way of releasing internal tension in your body and allows you to communicate a need to be comforted.
Misconception #5
After someone dies, the goal should be to “get over” your grief as soon as possible

You will never “get over” your grief, but you will learn to live with it. The goal is to become “
RECONCILED OR TO REACH RECONCILATION”; which means “learning to live without the physical presence of that person but with the memories and the loved you shared as you move into your new life”.
                       Written by Alan Wolfelt from the book: Understanding Your Grief

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