Coping with Losing Someone Before Christmas
Wednesday, 30 December 2020
Christmas can be an incredibly difficult time for anyone who has lost a loved one, whether you lost them earlier in the year or closer to Christmas. There is never a good time for somebody you care about to pass away, but it can be particularly tricky during the holiday season. Throughout November and December we are bombarded with sentimental songs, movies, advertising and more, which can be a real trigger point when you are trying to overcome grief. To try our best to help you get through this tough time, here at Memorial Card Shop we’ve written down our top tips for coping with bereavement throughout Christmas.
1. Talk to your friends and family
If you are struggling then it is so important that you reach out to other people. Many people who have lost loved ones are consistently reminded of them during the holiday period, and if you are grieving then it is likely you know somebody else who is grieving for the same person. Talk to your friends and family about how you’re feeling, and encourage them to open up if they are going through something similar. Whilst we can’t guarantee they will have the best advice, getting these things off your chest is often a big enough relief in itself, and many people will appreciate that you had the courage to start what could be a difficult conversation.
2. Take time to remember the deceased
Sometimes we try so hard to avoid thinking about death that the process of not upsetting yourself becomes equally as stressful as if you were to allow yourself to feel the pain of your loss. To avoid the burnout caused by completely shutting out these feelings, we recommend your set aside some time to honour the deceased. You could visit their resting place, or go on their favourite walk, play their favourite Christmas song, cook their favourite meal – the possibilities are endless, and you know best what your loved one would have wanted. If you are religious it might make you feel better to visit your place of worship to pay respects, say a prayer, and remember their life.
3. Avoid overindulgence
There is a lot of opportunity for drinking during the festive season, and if you are prone to getting emotional after one too many mulled wines then keep that in mind. Whilst we would never recommend bottling up your emotions, if you are more likely to get upset specifically because of alcohol then it is best to keep an eye on how much you drink during this time and consider avoiding it completely. On the other hand, if you ever feel like you are drinking with the intention of numbing your emotions then it is vital that you stop that behaviour before it becomes a serious problem. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you need to, Drink Aware have a lot of detailed and professional advice about tracking and reducing your alcohol consumption, and they even offer advice specifically for the Christmas period.
4. Put yourself first
Sometimes it is okay to be selfish, because you need to look after yourself before you are able to look after everyone else. If the holiday season is becoming hectic for you then don’t be afraid to put some time aside for yourself. If your family is watching a Christmas movie that reminds you of the deceased then don’t be afraid to sit it out and do something alone – treat yourself to a hot bath, read your favourite book, dedicate some time to your favourite hobby. Time alone can be a great way to reflect on your feelings and try and find peace with the loss of your loved one.
5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
A lot of our advice comes back to being open and honest about when you need help, whether you need someone to take care of your children whilst you have some quiet time, or you need help from a professional guidance counsellor, sometimes reaching out is the smartest thing you can do. The NHS has a page about dealing with bereavements and places to turn to, and the Cruse bereavement helpline is still open all throughout Christmas, even operating at reduced times on Christmas day.
We sincerely hope that if you needed it then some of this advice will be helpful for you and your loved ones this Christmas.
Here at Memorial Card Shop we make a variety of cards for funerals and memorial services including folding cards, memorial bookmarks, wallet memorial cards and thank you cards. If you are looking for memorial cards for an upcoming funeral then you can browse them here, and get in touch on 03450 542861 with any orders, queries or concerns.
Tags: Christmas Bereavement, Losing a Loved One, Grief