This can’t be happening to me!

5 Stages of Grief

This life is full of ups and downs. For humans, it seems we take hits more times than we can hit back. The feeling is not mutual nor equal to anyone or all. Some people take it with a light pat and move on with their lives. “It happens to one, can happen to anybody,” some would argue within themselves.

“No! No! NO!” some would throw tantrums and pulls hairs in an attempt to understand the situation questioning, “Why me?” This shows you actually take the hit but did something to avoid the total impact of the situation.

“Awww,” the worst of the two evils. Blaming and punishing yourself or losing yourself in the pain of loss. 

According to eClosure:

Grieving is a personal and highly individual experience.

There is really no set timeframe for grieving. Your personality, your life experience, your faith and coping style all have an impact on how you grieve. So be mindful to be patient with yourself and allow the process to naturally unfold.
Whether it takes weeks, months or even
years in many cases.

Grief can take a toll on the affected and the effected. Family mostly bear the burden of providing a supportive environment for recovery and healing.

The five stages, denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance are a part of the framework that makes up our learning to live with the one we lost. They are tools to help us frame and identify what we may be feeling. But they are not stops on some linear timeline in grief. Not everyone goes through all of them or in a prescribed order. Our hope is that with these stages comes the knowledge of grief ‘s terrain, making us better equipped to cope with life and loss. At times, people in grief will often report more stages. Just remember your grief is an unique as you are. —

The stages, popularly known by the acronym DABDA, include:

  1. Denial — The first reaction is denial. “This can’t be happening to me.” In this stage individuals believe the diagnosis is somehow mistaken, and cling to a false, preferable reality.
  2. Anger — When the individual recognizes that denial cannot continue, it becomes frustrated, especially at proximate individuals. Certain psychological responses of a person undergoing this phase would be: “Why me? It’s not fair!”; “How can this happen to me?”; ‘”Who is to blame?”; “Why would this happen?”.
  3. Bargaining — The third stage involves the hope that the individual can avoid a cause of grief. “Make this not happen, and in return I will…” Usually, the negotiation for an extended life is made in exchange for a reformed lifestyle. People facing less serious trauma can bargain or seek compromise.
  4. Depression — “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?”; “I’m going to die soon so what’s the point?”; “I miss my loved one, why go on?” During the fourth stage, the individual becomes saddened by the mathematical probability of death. In this state, the individual may become silent, refuse visitors and spend much of the time mournful and sullen.
  5. Acceptance — “It’s going to be okay.”; “I can’t fight it, I may as well prepare for it.”;  “I’m at peace with what happened.”; “Nothing is impossible.” In this last stage, individuals embrace mortality or inevitable future, or that of a loved one, or other tragic event. People dying may precede the survivors in this state, which typically comes with a calm, retrospective view for the individual, and a stable condition of emotions.


Kübler-Ross — a pioneer in near-death studies and the author of the groundbreaking book On Death and Dying (1969) — later expanded her model to include any form of personal loss, such as the death of a loved one, the loss of a job or income, major rejection, the end of a relationship or divorce, drug addiction, incarceration, the onset of a disease or chronic illness, an infertility diagnosis, and even minor losses.

How to manage your Grief

Having the support of other people, is the single most important factor in managing your grief. Hopefully, these 6 practical ways can help you:

  1. Turn to family & friends
  2. Draw comfort from your faith
  3. Join a support group
  4. Talk to a therapist or grief counsellor
  5. Take care of yourself
  6. Face your feelings

Coping with loss is a ultimately a deeply personal and singular experience — nobody can help you go through it more easily or understand all the emotions that you’re going through. But others can be there for you and help comfort you through this process. The best thing you can do is to allow yourself to feel the grief as it comes over you. Resisting it only will prolong the natural process of healing.


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