Coping With Loss At The Holidays
After the death of a loved one, the holidays can be an especially difficult time. If you are grieving, the impending holiday season may leave you with feelings of dread and anxiety rather than joy.
“By grieving in a healthy manner, you will be able to cope during – and eventually, again enjoy – the holiday season,” said Paulina Kim, M.D., Medical Director of the Metropolitan Jewish Hospice.
Here are some tips for dealing with loss during the holidays:
• Understand there is no right or wrong way to respond when grieving.
• Acknowledge your feelings. It is normal to feel sadness and grief. It is okay now and then to take time just to cry or express your feelings.
• If some holiday traditions are too painful, do not be afraid to change your plans or start new traditions.
• Seek support. Find a friend, relative, or religious or social services that can provide you with support and will listen to you.
• Be realistic. Know what you can or cannot handle. Do not expect that others will know exactly what to do and say. It is all right to tell others what you need. It is okay to say “no.”
• Ask for and accept help with shopping, cooking, or other holiday tasks if you feel overwhelmed. You do not have to do everything yourself.
• Be tolerant and understanding of family members. Remember, they may be hurting as well, and everyone behaves differently when they are grieving.
Metropolitan Jewish Hospice provides specialized medical care and support that meets the physical, spiritual and psychosocial needs of patients and families during an advanced illness. The focus of care is on the patient’s comfort, with special attention given to all medical management conditions. Metropolitan Jewish Hospice offers home or nursing home visits by members of a specialized interdisciplinary team.
For more information, call (718) 921-7601 or visit www.mjhs.org.