Regrettably, our society maintains a host of unrealistic assumptions and inappropriate expectations when it comes to the work of grief and the realities of mourning. Here are some myths to consider:
- Grief and mourning decline in a steadily decreasing fashion over time.
- All losses prompt the same type of mourning.
- Bereaved individuals need only express their feelings in order to resolve their mourning.
- Grief will affect the mourner psychologically but will not interfere in other ways.
- To be healthy after a death, the mourner must put that person out of mind.
- Intensity and length of mourning are a testimony to love for the deceased.
- When one mourns a death, one mourns only the loss of that person and nothing else.
- Losing someone to a sudden, unexpected death is the same as losing someone to an anticipated death.
- Mourning is over in a year.
- Time alone heals grief and mourning.
by David Fireman, LCSW, Adapted from Therese A. Rando