Past tense: bereaved
- to be deprived of a close relation or friend through their death.
NHS Choices* provide detailed information on bereavement, its symptoms, stages, and general advice. Here’s a snippet of information you may find useful in identifying bereavement.
Experts generally accept that there are four stages of bereavement:
- accepting that your loss is real
- experiencing the pain of grief
- adjusting to life without the person who has died
- putting less emotional energy into grieving and putting it into something new (in other words, moving on)
You'll probably go through all these stages, but you won’t necessarily move smoothly from one to the next. Your grief might feel chaotic and out of control, but these feelings will eventually become less intense. Give yourself time, as they will pass. You might feel:
- shock and numbness (this is usually the first reaction to the death, and people often speak of being in a daze)
- overwhelming sadness, with lots of crying
- tiredness or exhaustion
- anger, for example towards the person who died, their illness or God
- guilt, for example guilt about feeling angry, about something you said or didn’t say, or about not being able to stop your loved one dying
The GOV.UK website has information on what to do after someone dies, such as registering the death and planning a funeral.
*For more general information on coping with grief, help moving on and pre-bereavement care visit NHS Choices:
Or Visit Counselling Directory: