Helpful Facts About the 5 Stages of Grief

Helpful Facts About the 5 Stages of Grief

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There are a few commonalities that experts agree upon after years of research and study referred to as the 5 stages of grief. Still, grief for is different for everyone and you might not relate to what others feel in their emotional stage but a basic understanding can go a long ways towards healing.

For example, going through depression after a loss or fear of loss is completely normal so, it is not advisable to suppress it. In fact, it’s nice to take a chance and talk to an empathetic listener when you go through a traumatic experience. Or, perhaps, you might be able to listen to someone else that needs a sympathetic ear.

But first, a little background. A Swiss-American psychiatrist Elizabeth Kübler-Ross after after years of observing and working with terminally ill patients became aware of the five common stages of grief. This five-step model is termed the Kübler-Ross model. In fact, this model is in use to understand all types of grief including the death of loved ones. 

In order to understand the five positions in that model or to help someone else, let’s learn more about these 5 stages of grief. 

1. Denial

Denial is the first stage of grief. It’s when you don’t accept that something happens in your life or might happen soon. This is a natural part of the healing process, and it basically numbs you inside, making you deny the changes in your life. 

Some stay stuck at this stage while others quickly move to the next emotion, depending on the situation they’re going through. 

2. Anger

Anger as a result of a trauma or grief is completely different from other sources of anger. At this stage, your emotions that may have been been denying for so long resurface and you start questioning yourself. In fact, you might find yourself asking “why me?” or “what did I do to deserve this?” 

For instance, if you experience a loss in business or a failure in your studies, you might find yourself asking “why do such things happen to you only?” Of course, that is not accurate but it feels accurate when it happens to you. 

3. Bargaining

Bargaining is the third stage of grief, and, in my opinion, it is when you start imagining things or overthinking things in your mind. For instance, if I did it this way, maybe the situation would be completely different. Or one might think that, on the death of the loved one, if only I’d reached the hospital sooner, I could have saved them. 

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4. Depression

The fourth stage of grief is quite hard to cope with. If this goes to an extreme, people also face mental illness and emotional traumas. Moreover, they might hurt themselves. Therefore, it is better to seek therapy, if sadness overcomes you more often. 

By this stage, it is easier to accept the loss. You have adjusted to your surroundings, and you know there’s no way to change things. Now, one might feel lost, empty, useless, and abandoned. Or perhaps one might also choose to isolate for some time to digest the feelings.

5. Acceptance 

Acceptance is the last stage. But, in this instance, it doesn’t refer to being acquainted with your loss. In fact, it means accepting what has happened already and learning to live with it. 

Also, it is normal to stay at this stage and tumble back to the stage of denial, because healing is a continuous process, and it doesn’t happen in one flow.

This 5-stage model is only a reference and not a manual to follow. For example, it’s possible that you might experience nothing from these stages and feel completely different or you stay at one of these 5 stages for long.

Anything is possible. But, at the end of the day, it’s necessary to practice self-love and accept your moods when you’re feeling down.

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Susan Daniels

Susan Daniels

As someone who is on my own journey of healing, I know how important it is to seek out guidance and understanding. This website is for just that – an inclusive resource for anyone, regardless of their background, who wants to embark on a lifestyle journey of healing and personal growth.

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