Thoughts on death

Losing someone

Losing someone who has been close to you is difficult. It could be a family member, a relative, a friend or a pet. The emotions that describe what you feel when someone passes away can be called grief. Grief is often big and heavy to bear.


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Grief can go up and down

The reaction to death and loss is different. You may be sad and cry, angry or turn your emotions inwards and become quiet and withdrawn.

Two people who lose someone may react very differently and grief may take different lengths of time to process. This is partly a question of whether you have experienced a death in the past, but also what support you have from family and friends.

When grief strikes, you can say that grief is streaky. This means that you can be happy, laugh and feel pretty good even though you're actually really sad. This is common and it's about actually not being able to be sad all the time. You can feel guilty for not being sad all the time, but it's perfectly natural to have different emotions at the same time.

It can take a long time to feel well again after you have lost someone close to you. It may feel like you'll never be happy again. But in time, the pain will lessen.

During the most difficult time, you may need support and help. You can turn to someone you feel safe with, where you can talk about your feelings and about the person you have lost. This can be a good way to process, understand and slowly accept the difficult things that have happened.

Common to withdraw

It is common to withdraw when grief strikes. You have no energy to do things and feel sad.

It's important to be sad, but it's also important to try to get on with your everyday life. The grief will be there and some days will feel okay while other days will feel harder.

But to feel better, you need to get out, eat and sleep well and maybe see friends or family. This will allow you to dispel your difficult thoughts and make room for positive feelings and thoughts too.

There is help available

In the immediate aftermath of a loss, it is common to be unable to go to school or work, to have a decreased appetite for food and to feel very sad. If this goes on for a long time, you may need help to process your grief.

There are several places you can turn to for help and support. This could be through a youth clinic, school nurse or health centre. Many people find it helpful to talk to a psychologist.

There are many services that offer grief management, in conversation alone or with others. The Red Cross is one of them. You can find them here.

You can also talk to us in the chat about grief. We always listen to you.