The way we grieve our losses is impacted by many factors including: our own unique coping style, our history of previous losses, our support systems and, the way we view the loss. The way we grieve is also impacted by the kind of loss we have had, in other words who died and what is the nature of your relationship with that person.
There are some common aspects to each different kind of loss. The death of my mother affects me differently than the death of your mother affects you, because we are different people. But we have some things in common. We might both feel like orphans, particularly if we have no other parent. Maybe we are both struggling with difficult relationships with our siblings, now that our parent has died.
It can be helpful to look at different kinds of losses and see some of their commonalities. This helps us normalize our experience and helps us better understand what we are going through.
The death of a Friend can also feel like a disenfranchised loss. Their absence can be deeply felt and yet others don’t recognize it as a legitimate loss. The grievers often say “I feel so sad and no one gets how hard it is for me” A friend can have many connections in our life and can also be a lifelong companion and support. When a long time friend dies, a piece of our history is lost. It also brings us to face our own mortality .