When we suffer a loss: types of grief and how to solve them

When we suffer a loss: types of grief and how to solve them

There are many types of losses and duels, and they do not always relate to death, here are some examples:

Evolutionary duels

  • Childhood, puberty, adolescence, emancipation.

Social duels

  • Changes in status, unemployment, retirement.

A person can also do grieving after the breakup of an intimate relationship or in cases of separation from parents, change of country, loss of a house that has been important, and in general, before significant belongings, people and relationships. Also, duels for loss of dreams, projects, ideals, and duels for long illnesses, or wars.

A duel is always a loss. The loss and the sense of loss is unique.

It is important to detect the beliefs associated with the loss and see how these condition the duel. For example, of the following type:

"I will not be able to bear it." "The world is unfair." "Everything is forever." "The world is not worth it."

Internalizing these limiting beliefs which are summarized in "I can not trust life", the duel will be much more expensive in its process, and may become pathological. With them, we will settle in suffering instead of pain, and fight against what has happened, blaming the world, God, or who we can.

Not accepting from children the change, the lack of acceptance that life is bigger than us, of the natural cycle of life, that everything changes and nothing is eternal, it will complicate me to go through that duel and really accept the losses.

The same loss has a different meaning for people, because each one perceives it differently. And the emotional impact will depend on the type of link that the person had with the being that loses.


  • 1 Objectives pursued by the duel
  • 2 Truths about grief
  • 3 How to solve a Duel well?

Objectives pursued by the duel

  • Accept the reality of the loss. It is achieved after going through the entire grieving process.
  • Give explanation to the feelings, identify them and understand them, to be able to accept them, and find the appropriate channels of integration.
  • Adapt to the new existence Without the loved one, with the search for new roles and occupations.
  • Invest the emotional energy in new relationships

Truths about grief

  • Self-devaluing beliefs undoubtedly condition the way in which each one faces difficulties.
  • Duels hurt. And you can't avoid them hurting.
  • The things we leave always have to be elaborated. It is necessary to leave behind the things that were left in yesterday.
  • We do not live in reality, but in our image of it.
  • We lose not only through death, but also being abandoned, changing, moving on.
  • We are who we are thanks to everything lost, and how we have behaved in the face of those losses.
  • No one can grow if they have not experienced before themselves, much of the emotions and sensations that define the words on this list: impotence, irreversibility, desolation, anger, pain, emptiness, absence, helplessness, anguish, bewilderment, nostalgia, despair , self-reproach, crying, suffering, loneliness, fear, sadness, restlessness, strangeness, death.
  • Not only the big losses generate duels but each loss implies it.
  • Like it or not, I will be abandoned by each person, by each thing, by each situation, by each stage, by each idea, sooner or later, but inevitably.

Anticipatory: In case of deaths announced. For example, diseases, or separations in which the decision was already made.

Delayed: In those people who "control", or "do not have time to take care of themselves" or escape the pain and reality of the death of the loved one through hyperactivity. For months or even years, any memory or image triggers the unresolved duel.

Chronic: That drags the bereaved for years, absorbed by memories, unable to return to normal life. It is the eternal duel.

Pathological: Characterized by nervous exhaustion, hypochondriac symptoms, identification with the deceased or dependence on drugs or alcohol. Clinical depression Isolation. Chronic Denial It requires professional help.

The pathological duel is that of the wounds that never heal ... Years and years go by and for not surrendering to that terrible pain, the duel is eternalized, you stop living, you live without illusion, you run away so as not to face that pain so strong .

As he says Jorge Bucay in the book “The Way of Tears,” page 145: “Fifteen, twenty years pass by, and every time one comes here, because he is so afraid of desolation, he flees to anger, he hides in denial, he becomes a child, he stays at fault, runs backwards, to any place, as long as he does not face the soul in ruins. And if we don't do something to break the vicious circle, we go back again and again, changing pain for suffering and settling in it. ”

How to solve a Duel well?

William Worden proposes four tasks to restore the balance involved in the grieving process:

  • Accept the reality of the loss: implies assuming that the other will not be. Rituals help in these cases (we do not mean in any case to mummify, minimize, deny, have selective forgetfulness or resort to practices such as spiritualism).
  • Work the emotions and pain of loss: It is no use blocking feelings, denying pain, stopping thinking or traveling as a geographical cure.
  • Adapt to a medium in which the deceased is absent: It will help to assume new skills and roles to develop the feeling of a loss of self and the questioning of fundamental values ​​that may occur.
  • Emotionally relocate the deceased: It does not help to maintain attachment in the past, and it does help to have other people to love.

The ten “Yes” (according to Jorge Bucay), in front of the Duel

  • Give yourself permission to be wrong, vulnerable.
  • Trust yourself
  • New doors: what good can come from this loss?
  • Acceptance
  • Connection with life
  • Treat yourself with love, don't overdo yourself too much
  • Gratitude
  • Rest, take care of yourself
  • Learning
  • Share what you learned

What you should NEVER do if you try to help someone overcome their grief

  • To think that the one who is grieving, needs our wise advice. If you can't think of what to do, it is best to try to collaborate on some daily tasks. The simple paperwork, paperwork, order at home, can be for someone who is grieving, a challenge impossible to face.
  • Tell him that you understand what he feels if you have not been through a similar situation.
  • Try to find a justification for what has happened.
  • Take away what has happened by talking about what is left, or try to make him see the advantages of a new stage in his life.
  • Disrupt the expression of the PAIN of the sufferer. On numerous occasions, people who cut each other's emotions do not do so because of the declared alleged intention to protect them from their suffering, but, with the true and hidden intention of protecting themselves from their own painful emotions.

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