- You should not be alone during the holidays.
- Love does not end with death. Your relationship with your loved one continues.
- You need to talk about your grief. Don’t be afraid to share what you think, feel & need during the holidays.
- You need to know & honor your limitations during special days. Set your expectations low…not too high.
- You should eliminate unnecessary stress. Build in time for yourself & your needs.
- You need to be with supportive, comforting people. Limit your time with people who are difficult to deal with or who cause you stress.
- You have an emotional need to mention the name of the person who has died.
- You need to tell others what is right for you during the holidays…what is comforting & what is painful.
- You should plan ahead for gatherings.
- You ought to embrace your treasure of memories.
- You should reflect on why you & others celebrate these special days. Make them filled with meaning & purpose.
- You should depend upon the resources available to you through your faith.
- Mourning in a healthy way during the holidays will help you heal & move toward reconciliation.
Written by Larry M. Barber, LPC-S, CT author of the grief survival guide “Love Never Dies: Embracing Grief with Hope and Promise” available online at Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Love-Never-LPC-S-Larry-Barber/dp/1613796005 ), Barnes & Noble (http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/love-never-dies-lpc-s-ct-larry-m-barber-ct-larry-m/1104364890?ean=9781613796016).
The grief survival guide is also available in Spanish as “El Amor Nunca Muere: Aceptando el Dolor con Esperanza y Promesa”
Both English and Spanish versions are available for Kindle and Nook. Larry is the director of GriefWorks, a free grief support program for children and their families in Dallas TX http://grief-works.org.