SURVIVNG THE HOLIDAYS
For those still mourning the loss of a spouse, child, parent or other loved one, that first holiday season can be an emotionally trying time.
Between the memories that are stirred up by the festivities and the expectations to be jolly and full of holiday spirit, the season can mean slipping back into grief and depression for those still coping with loss.
While grief counselors and therapists agree that there’s no right or wrong way to celebrate that first holiday after the death of a loved one, there are ways to ease the pain of the holiday, and things that friends and family can do to help those in mourning.
Family Support vs. Time Alone
Often, there is an assumption that the best remedy for getting through the holidays while grieving is distraction and keeping busy and doing all the traditional holiday activities. While this can be helpful for some, it is not the only way to help yourself through this time, experts say.
Reaching Out and Taking Time for Self
“If a person says to their family, ‘I just need to be by myself,’ often some family members will say that that’s bad and they can’t be left alone. But if [you] feel in your gut and your heart that that’s what you need for your coping, then you follow your gut. Everybody needs space differently, and I wouldn’t say that it’s necessarily a sign of someone not coping to want to be alone,” says Amy Sales, a social worker and author of “Walking on Eggshells,” a guide for caregivers of those with life-limiting illnesses.
Our trusted friends at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital’s Survivorship Center also offer excellent programs throughout the year.
JACK’S FUND SUPPORTS SURVIVORSHIP PROGRAMS:
The Board of Directors of the Jack H. Marston II Melanoma Fund are pleased to announce a $5,000 disbursement to the Survivorship Programs at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital benefiting melanoma patients and their families.
Development of the survivorship initiative is still in its early stages.
We welcome all suggestions for future programing and support groups.
Click here for PDF of letter
Click here to learn more about the survivorship programs at LGH.