Dealing with the loss of a loved one in or out of school will be challenging, and managing work or school life can be just as difficult. Luckily, there are some resources that can help.
Personally, I have dealt with a lot of loss in my life, and this article will show what helped me and what resources can be of use. I do not claim to know anyone else’s hardships, but I would like to help.
One of the first things a person should do is reach out to family and friends and a therapist, if possible. I know that that has been said many times by people much smarter than I, but grieving in silence for long periods of time is not healthy.
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette does offer free counseling to students, and while I cannot promise that it will be the best counseling, it is still there. If you can afford it, there are therapists who specialize in grief for those who need it.
In my 20 years on Earth, I have lost pets, all of my grandparents and worst of all, my father. I should have gotten counseling immediately, but I don’t blame my mom for that at all. However, not getting help quickly did lead to severe anger issues and depression. So please get professional help when you can.
“Therapy can help with any sort of loss, whether society validates the grief or not,” according to GoodTherapy.org. “Therapy is an opportunity to explore your feelings and memories without judgment. No loss is too big or too small to warrant support. You do not have to endure your grief alone.”
Other steps that can be taken are to reach out to your school and work to let them know of your situation. They may be able to work with you and give you a smaller workload or some time off.
Please do not let yourself fall out of your routine too much. I know from personal experience that once you fall off the wagon, it is very difficult to get back on and focus on healthy coping mechanisms.
These do not include drinking copious amounts of alcohol or other sorts of reckless behaviors such as driving dangerously. I know that you want to feel numb or try to feel happy again, but that does come with time.
Healthy coping mechanisms include exercising, drawing/writing, going out with others and allowing yourself to grieve, according to asco.org, a clinical journal.
“As much as it hurts, it is natural and healthy to grieve,” reads the website. “Sometimes people feel guilty about the way they feel, thinking they should ‘get over it.’ Let yourself grieve and fully experience your feelings, such as shock, sadness, anger, and loneliness. Don't judge yourself...”
It is also important to care for yourself properly. Shower. Brush your teeth. Clean your personal space.
Again, I will not pretend to know or understand your situation, but I hope that I have helped, at least in some small way.