Drug testing

Who has the Worst Pain

During the 28 years I have been interacting with bereaved people, one of the most frequent questions I have been asked is, "Who has the worst pain?" Do bereaved parents suffer more than widows and widowers? Do children whose parents die feel more agony than children who lose a sibling? Is it harder to watch a loved one suffer for a long time before death releases the victim than it is to answer the doorbell or the phone at midnight and suddenly hear the news of tragedy? Is suicide worse than homicide? Is the death of an "older" child more difficult to grieve than the death of a newborn or infant?

If there were one, clear and definitive answer to those questions, grieving could be neatly catalogued and mourners could be organized into convenient categories. Our comforters and caregivers would then be able to select from a predictable menu of helps, and everyone could get "healed" more quickly and efficiently. If only....

But the truth is it makes little difference how our loved ones died, at what ages, or what our relationships were named. The pain of grief is agony no matter how or when it happens.

Long-term dying is not better or worse than sudden death-it is different.

Mourning the death of an infant is not better or worse than mourning the death of a teenager-it is different.

The grief of the widowed is not better or worse than the grief of bereaved parents-it is different.

Death by homicide is not easier or harder than death by suicide-it is different. And the list goes on and on?

There is no adequate preparation for the loneliness and emptiness that must be squarely faced when we finally come to the realization that we will never again in this life see that one who is so precious to us. In every case the mourning period can be just as painful and difficult for one as it is for another, but the grief needs of the bereaved can be very different.

When the relationship to a loved one was cemented with the permanent "super glue" of devotion and commitment, death causes a ripping apart that leaves the survivor with a devastating and gaping wound, regardless of how the death occurred or what the relationship was named.

However, if the adhesive that formed the relationship bond was simply "pressure sensitive," the separation may involve no more than the sting of tape being quickly pulled off skin. The pain may be sharp but short-lived, regardless of the type of death or the kind of connection. It all depends on how bonded the survivor was to the deceased.

In our society, a "friendship" may not be taken as seriously as a blood relationship; an engagement may not be perceived as importantly as a marriage; the death of a parent may be assumed to be a more deeply felt loss than it truly was to the surviving child or children. And we must never assume that a long-term dying process has fulfilled the "grief quota" of the survivors who loved and lost!

It's not fair to assume that if mourners have some advance warning that the death is coming, their grieving time is shorter or less intense. We must be careful not to confuse the natural relief that the deceased is finally beyond the reach of suffering with the assumption that the grief of missing them will be abated.

By inadvertently giving our society the message that certain kinds of relationships or certain kinds of experiences are "worse" or "better" than others, the grief support for some survivors may be in danger of being prematurely aborted or even ignored entirely.

Grief is an individual experience and comforters and caregivers must be careful to support the bereaved on a very personal, each-case basis. Mourners feel the pain of grief in direct proportion to their perception of how important the loved one was in their lives, and that value is entirely subjective.

There is really only one criteria that establishes the quality and quantity of mourning: The intensity of grieving is directly related to the intensity of bonding.

Good Grief Resources (http://www.goodgriefresources.com) was conceived and founded by Andrea Gambill whose 17-year-old daughter died in 1976. In 1977, she founded one of the earliest chapters of The Compassionate Friends, an international bereaved-parent support group. In 1987, she founded and edited Bereavement magazine, and in 2000, she joined Centering Corporation as Editor of their new magazine, Grief Digest. Twenty eight years of experience in grief support has provided valuable insights into the unique needs of the bereaved and their caregivers and wide access to many excellent resources.

limousine chicago service
In The News:

Online Memorial ? A Dedication of Love for Your Departed Loved Ones

Life has always been a journey, a journey of finding... Read More

How to Deal with Suicide and Euthenasia

The following is a report that indicates how you might... Read More

The Look of Grief

Never, since man has walked upright, have people all over... Read More

The Creative Side of Healing

One of the areas where I seem to be placing... Read More

You Can Help A Grieving Heart

Oh, we can talk about the best cold medications and... Read More

Whats It All About?

For most people life is a fairly ordinary existence -... Read More

Euthanasia: How Will I Know When its Time?

Pippin needed assistance from his owner to get to his... Read More

The Twists and Turns of Life

When I was born in 1962 I thought life was... Read More

On Empathy

The Encyclopaedia Britannica (1999 edition) defines empathy as:"The ability to... Read More

Pope John Paul II

WHAT I LEARNED FROM POPE JOHN PAUL II ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~I am... Read More

Watching Death

Like it or not, we think in line with our... Read More

Tenderizing

Recently, the magazine I own and edit got a hate... Read More

How Can I Transform Tragedy?

There is only one place where tragedy occurs, and that... Read More

Sympathy Flowers

Sending a floral tribute is a very appropriate way of... Read More

When The Spirit Leaves The Body

Do you spend most of your time inside or outside... Read More

The Valley of Sorrow or My Life as a Well Digger

It felt like I had been run over by a... Read More

Handicapped From Suicide

I am 23 years old. I come from a large... Read More

Trial by Fire - 9 Tips for Grieving Couples

You will often hear that grief and loss bring couples... Read More

Angel of Comfort... The Story

I am an Angel artist and several weeks ago while... Read More

Death of a Parent: Saying Good-Bye to Mommy or Daddy

Coping with the death of a loved one is never... Read More

Traumas as Social Interactions

("He" in this text - to mean "He" or "She").We... Read More

Physiological Consequences of Carrying Emotional Trauma

Although many of us carry some form of emotional trauma... Read More

Terrorism Worries: 10 Ways to Turn Fear into Hope

September 11th changed America and chances are it changed you.... Read More

The Walking Wounded

When my phone rang the other day, it was a... Read More

Liberation

It is one thing to be free; it is quite... Read More

induction roadway lighting street lighting Pete's produce ..