The Herald Bulletin

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Columns

March 1, 2014

Rob Loose: After loved one dies, don't forget the grieving process

Grief is a healthy and necessary process — and as much as you might like to, you can’t skip it.

However, each and every person deals with grief differently. Some folks wear their heart on their sleeves and let their emotions flow, while others resolve to keep their chin up and suppress their grief.

Why would anyone push down these feelings of sorrow after losing a loved one? There are many different reasons.

Some are trying to be the strong one as they support other family members. Then there are the tough guys who hide their emotions because they’ve been taught “big boys don’t cry.” Still others simply cannot accept that their loved one is dead, especially if they lost them suddenly to a horrific accident.

I’ve also seen instances when the immediate family chose not to hold a service, depriving loved ones of the opportunity to say a final goodbye.

I believe this is a huge mistake. Without a service, friends and family don’t gain the closure they so desperately need, which means they may never fully accept the loss.

In today’s tough economy, cremation has become an increasingly popular final disposition option because it is simple and affordable. Unfortunately, in an effort to save even more money, many financially strapped families are choosing cremation without a visitation or any other service.

Yet foregoing the service often ends up costing these families in the long run — not in dollars, but in emotional healing.

It is extremely important to give family members and friends the opportunity to say goodbye to a person they loved — whether it’s a public visitation or a simple private viewing for the closest loved ones. Many people cannot even begin their healing process without that closure.

And I’m not just talking about relatives; let’s not forget about close friends and beloved pets; they grieve, too! So, it’s important to allow them that opportunity for a final farewell.

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