Few events in life are as painful as the death of a spouse. Losing a loved one changes your entire life, especially when the loved one was also your best friend. So many years together, so many memories you two created together are all you have left. Learn to find ways in which to honor a loved one’s memory while moving on in a healthy, life-affirming manner.
- Allow Yourself to Mourn – Mourning is the open expression of your thoughts and feelings regarding the death of your spouse. It is an essential part of healing.
- Your Grief is Uniquely Your Own – No one else had the same relationship you had with your spouse. Don’t try to compare your experience with that of others or to adopt assumptions about just how long your grief should last. Take a one-day-at-a-time approach that allows you to grieve at your own pace.
- Be tolerant of Your Physical and Emotional Limits – Your feelings of loss and sadness will probably leave you fatigued. Respect what your body and mind are telling you. Get daily rest. Eat balanced meals. Lighten your schedule as much as possible.
- Talk About Your Thoughts and Feelings – Share the special things you miss about your spouse. Talk about the sort of person he or she was, the types of activities you enjoyed together, and memories that allow for both laughter and tears. It’s important not to ignore your grief. It’s okay to speak from your heart, not just your head.
- Find a Support System – The most compassionate self-action you can take is to find a support system of caring friends and relatives who will provide the understanding you need. Avoid individuals who are disapproving or who try to tell you how you should grieve.
- Claiming Life Insurance Benefits – If you are the beneficiary of your spouse’s life insurance policy, you must file a claim in order to receive your benefits.