Why The Bereaved Need Outside Help
By Joanie Overbeck - TLC Group
WHY DO WE NEED OUTSIDE HELP TO RESOLVE OUR GRIEF
OUR GRANDPARENTS DIDN'T NEED HELP
Well, they did, but it was inherent in their community.
1) Our grandparents had seen others, in their often multi- generational home or neighborhood, grieve. They learned that grieving was a normal response to a loss, and they learned how to grieve or how not to grieve, but it was a part of their life experience.
Today, most adults have never seen anyone, up-close and personal, grieve. We don't know what's normal or how to do it. We have no education to handle the most difficult times in our lives.
2) Our grandparents had society rules that told you grieving was okay. People wore armbands; they cared for their dead; there were wakes in the home; they wore black for up to a year; it was respectable to remember and honor the dead; tragedies and losses were looked at as major life events that people needed time to recover from.
Today, we are given three days bereavement leave from work, if the person is deemed close enough to us. We are also given many other messages from well-meaning friends and family that we should be over "it". And, if we are not, then we are mentally ill. Many healthcare professionals misdiagnose people because they don't know what is normal!
3) Our grandparents had more support and ties to the community. They grew up and lived in the same small town or community most of their lives. Their family and friends were close by geographically. They had many loved ones nearby to help them daily cope with the burden of grief. And, those loved ones had a better idea of what was normal.
Today, we are lucky if we have any of our family in the same city, and if we have a friend we have known longer than five years in that city. So, we often grieve in isolation. Thinking we are the only one who is having a problem dealing with loss!!!!!
So, the reason we need help today is that:
WE ARE GIVEN NO TIME, NO ROLE MODELS, NO SUPPORT AND NO EDUCATION TO GET THROUGH THE MOST TRAUMATIC TIMES OF OUR LIVES.
We believe much of the anger and violence in our society is because we are not helping people mend after traumatic events in their lives. We want them back to work and fully functioning as a wife, or husband or secretary or whatever role they play in our lives. We must learn what is normal and how to help, and then in someway pass that information on to someone else. You may save a life by doing so!