Grief is a natural reaction to loss. People experience grief or emotional pain when they lose someone or something important to them. Everyone grieves differently, it is both a personal and complex experience.

Today we wanted to share some useful information provided by The Good Grief Trust, that can hopefully help those of you who are grieving or want to know how to help someone who is. Their aim is to normalise grief and get the public talking, as well as educating more people to know what to say and what to do to help the bereaved.

Your story could become someone’s hope

Sharing our stories can help those grieving to know that the person who has died will be remembered and can help the bereaved to process their grief. Sharing stories will help others to understand the impact of grief and loss and will enable conversations to take place, to open up to emotions and feelings that are often difficult to express.

Just because I’m smiling doesn’t mean I’m not grieving

The bereaved often have to hide their grief from others. Sometimes it is from their friends and family as they do not want to burden them. Sometimes it is from their colleagues at work. Please look out for them, check they are okay, in the early days and ongoing.  They may look alright, they may be going to work, but deep inside they could be struggling and just need your support and understanding.

Say their name, I’m thinking about them anyway

We are often afraid to mention the person’s name who has died. We think we will upset our friend or family member, but it is generally the opposite. By saying their name, remembering them and talking about them, you are helping to share your love and affection for that person. This is very important and will help those grieving to know that you will help to keep their memory alive.

There’s no one face of grief

We will all be affected by a bereavement. Children, young people, the older generation, all faiths, all religions, all cultures, all sectors of our community will grieve.

There’s no set time for grieving

There is a myth that you ‘get over’ grief. That you ‘move on’. You don’t. You move forward with your grief, but you may be affected by a bereavement throughout your whole life. Often after the funeral, people leave and things go ‘back to normal’. This is the time when the bereaved most need support, when they feel alone and isolated. We need to understand that there are triggers that may come from nowhere that will affect them in the weeks, months and years after the death.

If you are having more bad days than good lately, it’s okay, to not be okay. You can call a team of dedicated mental health professionals 24/7 on 0121 262 3555.