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  • Writer's pictureDebi

Comparing loss - there is no hierarchy of grief

We’re all on the same train but not on the same journey

We’re all on the same train but not on the same journey

As a country, we’re continuing to experience the loss of our normal life, and adapting to a ‘new normal.’ There’s uncertainty over how Christmas will play out. There’s already talk of tougher covid measures, leading to thoughts of further Lockdowns.

While we’re all feeling this, others are grieving the loss of their relatives, the loss of pets, relationship breakdowns, the loss of health, or their financial security.

They are all experiences of real grief. However, everyone grieves differently.

Comparing one grief to another can lead to people feeling as if their loss isn’t as big, for whatever reason, even though their feelings are totally valid and real to them.

There is no hierarchy of grief. Since all relationships are unique, so is each person’s grief. Nobody’s grief is bigger or smaller than yours.

However, the fact that all grief is experienced at 100% doesn’t mean that all grief is experienced at the same level of emotional intensity. The loss of your sibling presents a very different set of emotions to losing your job, for example.

It's worth mentioning again; everyone's reaction to loss is unique. Resist using well intentioned phrases such as, 'I know how you feel,’ or talking about your own grief experience.

Instead, practice good listening skills and be prepared for emotionally uncomfortable conversations. Keep in mind that grievers need to be heard without judgement, comparison, criticism, or analysis, rather than being 'fixed.’

About Debi

Debi Richens

The Founder of The Soul Phoenix Emotional Resilience Coaching, Debi is an Emotional Resilience coach who works in Trauma, PTSD, Grief, and Loss. Debi has a particular interest in Parental Alienation, Grandparent Alienation and Estrangement - having a firm belief that everyone should be afforded a voice and be heard and supported.


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