Grief comes from many sources - the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, the breakup of a relationship, realizing a truth that you wish were different, a traumatic experience - and it also has many manifestations. There is grief that never or barely shows up in tears. This type of grief that can hum along, barely noticeable but most always there, tinting your world a little greyer. This grief stuck in denial can last for years, and a person can get so used to it they do not notice, and they may even suppress or repress the source of their grief, convincing themselves it is resolved because it is in the past or few tears were cried. A person can come to believe that they have a sadness to their nature, when in actuality, they have a grief they have not processed. On the other side of the spectrum is the kind of grief that sweeps over a person and has them sobbing, howling, and keening. This kind of grief is immediate, visible and visceral. A person with this kind of grief has moments or even hours and days where they may function, but the tears and sobs come back. Another manifestation of grief is an irritability or even anger that comes up too easily or in disproportionate response to a situation. A person with this kind of grief may lash out at loved ones or strangers for whom they actually bore no resentment. They may not respond with much feeling to the source of their grief, but with great resentment or fury at other things. While there are commonalities in the sources and kinds of grief, each person is unique and each person experiences a kind of grief when they lose something that is unique to them.
Some of the manifestations of grief can be physical and others psychological, but all affect your health and happiness. Manifestations of grief can be:
These are just some of the manifestations of grief. Grief is not just a psychological thing. It has implications for your physical body too.The best treatment for grief is to process your grief, but that is not always easy in part because processing grief takes lots of talking about your feelings and often this takes time and patience with yourself. Sometimes it is important to treat the physical manifestations so you can process your grief, but most of the time the physical and psychological are intertwined.
Some things you can do to begin the process of processing your grief are:
Medicine can also help with insomnia and other aspects of grief. The most important thing for processing your grief is to feel your feelings and talk about your feelings, thoughts, regrets and reflections with someone who listens without judgment and with compassion to you, someone who is not trying to fix you or resolve your problem but will be there for you as you process your grief. A good friend, your doctor, a sponsor, and a therapist can be good people to talk to.