• Why Choose
    Our Firm?

    We limit the number of clients that we have at one time, allowing us to focus on your case.

    Personalized Representation
  • Know the
    Benefits

    Find out if you and your family can benefit from our elder law planning services!

    More Information
  • Dedicated & Experienced

    Our firm exclusively handles elder law concerns so your family can obtain peace of mind.

    Meet Your Attorney
  • Complimentary Consultation

    Let us help. Request your consultation today and we will be in touch.

    Contact Us Now

Survivor's Grief; The Trauma of Being Alive

Mark Epstein wrote, in The New York Times August 4, 2013, about a comment from his mother as follows:

“Talking with my 88-year-old mother, four and a half years after my father died from a brain tumor, I was surprised to hear her questioning herself. “You’d think I would be over it by now,” she said, speaking of the pain of losing my father, her husband of almost 60 years. “It’s been more than four years, and I’m still upset.”

I believe I understand how this lady feels. This article made my mind swirl around me. I too have lost many people in my life. My parents, my step-father, my dear Aunt Mary. My beloved husband John has been gone for almost twelve years. As I look back, I realize I am no longer in tears about these losses. But certain feelings never go away. My love for them will always be in my heart…and overall I believe grieving is a very good thing.

Fortunately, I see John’s face, every time I look at my daughter, Amy. She is a female version of her father…a comment she does not appreciate nor understand. That is fine with me. I don’t want her to know how this feels, at least not yet. Her turn for grief will come soon enough, because grief is a very important part of life. We all have to learn how to grieve and grieve in our own way.

I learned when John died just how difficult it is deal with. I believe the most important thing I learned from grief was that I had to let myself grieve. My counselor would always say I needed to make “Tear Soup”. My tears would have to fill a bucket, or buckets, before the grief would give me peace. I had to learn to face it, confront it and feel the pain for as long as I needed to….in order to move on with my life.

The average time for grieving for the loss of a spouse is 7 years. Yes, 7 years. That means that the first year I was in shock. The second year the shock started to wear off. The third year it wore off to a kind of pain I had never known before, and the remaining amount of time I needed to feel the loss, and let myself grieve. I know John’s loss took me more than 7 years to get over. But I got through it. I don’t really know how much tear soup I actually produced….but it was buckets and buckets. My family and friends tried to help me. The comments went from “You mean you are not over this yet?” (Emphasis on yet!) “This is not healthy! Move on with your life!” “The best cure for one is another one!” and my favorite “Don’t be so upset. Now you can start a new life.” Someday I will blog about the 10 worst things you say to a loved one after a loss.

I know these individuals meant well. But I realize now, they had no idea about how to deal with grief and loss. Fortunately, I was able to ignore them and give myself the luxury of my grief for as long as I needed. Dr. Epstein goes on to say:

  • “My response to my mother — that trauma never goes away completely — points to something I have learned through my years as a psychiatrist. In resisting trauma and in defending ourselves from feeling its full impact, we deprive ourselves of its truth.”

I agree with him completely. I urge everyone to give themselves permission to grieve for as long as it takes. Don’t be afraid of the feeling. Life is too short to be afraid to be human.

  • Why Choose
    Our Firm?

    We limit the number of clients that we have at one time, allowing us to focus on your case.

    Personalized Representation
  • Know the
    Benefits

    Find out if you and your family can benefit from our elder law planning services!

    More Information
  • Dedicated & Experienced

    Our firm exclusively handles elder law concerns so your family can obtain peace of mind.

    Meet Your Attorney
  • Complimentary Consultation

    Let us help. Request your consultation today and we will be in touch.

    Contact Us Now

Contact Us

Edwards Elder Law, P.A.
St. Petersburg Elder Law Attorney
Located at: 2510 1st Ave. N.,
St. Petersburg, FL 33713
View Map
Phone: (727) 755-5808
Website:
© 2017 All Rights Reserved.

Disclaimer

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.