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Myths about grief

  • All losses are the same.
  • It takes two months to get over your grief.
  • All bereaved people grieve in the same way.
  • Grief always declines over time in a steadily decreasing fashion.
  • When grief is resolved, it never comes up again.
  • Family members will always help grievers.
  • Children grieve like adults.
  • Feeling sorry for yourself is not ever helpful.
  • It is better to put painful things out of your mind.
  • You should not think about your deceased loved one at the holidays because it will make you too sad.
  • Bereaved individuals only need to express their feelings and they will resolve their grief.
  • Expressing feelings that are intense is the same as losing control.
  • There is no reason to be angry at people who tried to do their best for your deceased loved one.
  • There is no reason to be angry at your deceased loved one.
  • Only sick individuals have physical problems while grieving.
  • Because you feel crazy, you may be going crazy.
  • Infant death shouldn’t be too difficult to resolve because you didn’t know the child that well.
  • Children need to be protected from grief and death.
  • Rituals and funerals are unimportant in helping us deal with life and death in contemporary America.
  • Being upset and grieving means that you do not believe in God or trust your religion.
  • You will have no relationship with your loved one after the death.
  • The intensity and length of your grief are testimony to your love for the deceased.
  • There is something wrong if you do not always feel close to your other family members since you should be happy they are still alive.
  • There is something wrong with your if you think that part of you has died with your loved one.
  • It is better to tell bereaved people to “be brave” and “keep a stiff upper lip” because then they will not have to experience as much pain.
  • Grief will affect you psychologically, but in no other way.
  • Losing someone to sudden death is the same as losing someone to an anticipated death.
  • You will not be affected much if your parent dies when you are an adult.
  • Parents usually divorce after a child dies.
  • It is not important to have social support in your grief.
  • Once your loved one has died, it is better not to focus on him or her, but to put him or her in the past and go on.
  • You can find ways to avoid the pain of your grief and still resolve it successfully.


From: Grieving: How to Go on Living When Somone You Love Dies.
By Therese A. Rando, Ph.D, 1989