“The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not ‘get over’ the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to.”
― Elizabeth Kubler-Ross and John Kessler
I had a friend who once asked me about grieving, when she would be “done with it”, so she could “get back to her life”. It was difficult to explain to her that she might never be over it, and there is no set schedule for grief, neither controllable in terms of the source, or how you deal with it. How you think you ought to be able to deal with it – i.e. how fast you think you should get over it – very often has no bearing in what actually happens. Trying to control it often makes the process of grieving that much more painful, because trying to squash it down into a little box hurts way worse.
People who insist that you need to “get over it”, in my experience, are telling you that your grief is somehow inconvenient for them.
This post first appeared on 24 June 2013.