A woman sitting on a bench by a lake

 

Written by Jenny Goldade

 

Whether you were dating or life partners, coping with the death of a significant other isn’t easy.

 

It’s hard to lose someone you cared deeply about and spent a lot of your time with. With Valentine’s Day coming up, dealing with the loss can be more difficult than ever.

 

It’s important to realize that grief and mourning mean two different things. Grieving is the beginning of the mourning process that can last weeks, months, or even years. The mourning process begins once you have accepted the loss and are trying to adjust to life without the deceased. You shouldn’t feel rushed to start dating again. Some people may be ready sooner than others, or some not at all.

 

Allow yourself proper time to heal and remember to love and take care of yourself. Everyone has their own way of dealing with grief, and there are many ways to help yourself during this process.

 

Don’t Rush Grief

It’s alright to take your time when coping with the death of your partner. Don’t let anyone tell you how long you should grieve; you can best determine this for yourself.

 

If you can, it’s a good idea to hold off on making any major decisions until you’re done grieving, so you don’t act on emotion and regret it later. Decisions like whether to get rid of their things or sell the house you bought together can wait until you’ve allowed yourself time to grieve.

 

Create a Tradition

Creating a tradition to remember your loved one is a great way to honor their life. On Valentine’s Day or the anniversary of their death, you can visit their gravesite, eat their favorite meal, or do their favorite pastime. A memorial item, like a bookmark, remembrance candle, or ornament is another way to have something to always remember them.

 

Turn Grief into Positive Action

Turn your grief into a positive outcome for your community. You can raise money for a cause, volunteer your time at a local charity, or simply share your story with others dealing with similar situations to help them find ways to cope.

 

Seek Comfort from Loved Ones

Talking to a trusted family member or friend can help you process your grief. Joining a support group where you can share your story and talk with others who lost their significant other can help you feel less alone. If your grief becomes overwhelming, you may want to seek the guidance of a professional.

 

If you and your deceased loved one have children, remember that they’re grieving the loss as well. To help your children grieve, encourage them to share their feelings and make them feel comfortable engaging in open conversations if they have questions or just want to talk.

 

Try Something New

It can be difficult to adjust to being alone when you’re used to doing things with your significant other. Keeping yourself busy with activities can help with grief, but make sure to allow yourself the time to grieve and not push it off. Try taking an exercise class or joining a book club or other activity. You also can consider adopting a pet for companionship.

 

What other healthy ways can you grieve the loss of a significant other? Leave a comment with your suggestions!