Something I’ve often cautioned grieving people about is to not self-isolate during the grieving process. Losing social connections at a time when you inevitably need added supports and encouragement can lead one down a dark and desolate trail. Human beings are social by nature and need interaction to survive.
What happens when we take away the social connection for a grieving person? They may begin to look at themselves and their situation through a skewed lens, as there aren’t other people giving them a different perspective. Social distancing for safety and health can additionally become social isolation.
When this happens, it is easy to turn the view from isolating oneself to stay healthy, to thinking others are not interested in you, don’t want to be bothered by you, don’t care or don’t understand my situation, and so on. This can lead to the thought process of people don’t like me and don’t want to be around me.
In actuality by self-isolating you have created your own loneliness, and it is not easy to dig yourself out of that hole. It can be hard to see the light when you are overwhelmed with grief and how your loss has changed your world forever. We must push ourselves to keep moving forward, as hard as that can be.
Give yourself permission to reach out for some kindness. Accept help from a friend or even a stranger; you may be helping them too. During this time of Coronavirus, think of it as mandated social distancing rather than mandated social isolation.
Talk to your friends and family and ask them to help you by checking in on you so don’t self-isolate, ask them to be patient with you during this difficult time, and let them know how you are truly feeling. Utilize the technology of video calls so you can have the added dimension of connectedness.
Look into online support groups where other people are living through similar experiences to your own. Midland Care is offering counseling sessions via phone or video chatting and also offering grief support groups via online meeting apps. Call 785-232-2044 and ask to speak to a grief counselor to get connected to these grief resources.