Loss and grief are often very normal emotions, but often ones we try to hide. We can feel forced to be ashamed of our feelings of grief and don’t want to make other people feel uncomfortable. We can also be shut down easily with well meaning, but unhelpful comments like: ‘Try and focus on the positives’, ‘But think of all the things you do have’, ‘You just need to accept it.’
While some of the sentiment of these could be ways of handling the experience of loss, what those phrases do in practice is tell us that the person saying this doesn’t really want to hear what we’re saying or how we’re actually feeling. They’d prefer the easier stuff, rather than the reality of now, because it’s more comfortable.
Many articles and research centred around grief and loss suggest that one of the first things you can do is acknowledge how you actually feel. We’ve created the #thatsexactlyhowifeel (inspired by the one and only Lizzo!) campaign as a chance for us all to be brutally honest about how we feel right now. In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, our lives have been turned upside down; what many of us are experiencing is the feeling of grief. We encourage you to share the good, the bad, the ugly and everything in between to show the power of acknowledging our collective journey of loss in these unprecedented times. We’re listening.
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Author: Steph Turner