Grieving without shame
As a clinician in NJ, I am constantly amazed by how vocal and public we can be about some things, while remaining totally limited in our ability to discuss other things. As a society where almost EVERYTHING is public knowledge, from the places we ‘check-in’ across the globe to our personal feelings on every possible topic, it baffles me how some topics are still considered too taboo to speak about. Grief is one such topic that we still keep under wraps. In a world full of transparency, would it surprise you that pictures of people’s daily clothing, #fashion, and members of their family, #family, have more than 500 million posts on Instagram and Twitter, while tags such as #grief and #bereavement have less than 155,000 posts across those same platforms? Even though grief is an individual process that people often want to experience in private, silencing its existence only maintains this taboo and makes so many people I work with feel like their grieving process is “taking too long” or that there is something wrong with them for “still feeling this way.”
Grief is as individual as a snowflake and the grieving process is not time-limited, meaning that it is totally fine for you to deal with it for as long as you need to, without feeling ashamed of it. Talk about your grief, use tools to help you cope in a positive way, and don’t worry about what society expects your process to look like. Let’s lessen the stigma on grief and make it comfortable for people to own their process without shame.