Some feelings and emotions you may experience are natural…


Sadness – for the loss in your life.

Shock/disbelief – at what has happened, numbness, a sense of unreality.

Fear – of a similar event happening again, feeling vulnerable.

Anger – at what happened and possibly the events leading to the death or even towards the person who has died.

Helplessness – can’t fix it, and don’t know what to do about it.

Guilt –things that have been done/said or left undone/unsaid.

Relief – that suffering is over and you are now free from worry and provision of care.

Loneliness – missing the person and facing life without them.

Frustration – at being in a situation that is not of your choice.


You may experience other effects….

Physical symptoms – for example upset tummy, headaches, lack of energy and lower levels of tolerance.

Dreams of the person who has died and the circumstances of the death.

Memories – may surface at unexpected times.

Sexuality – could be an increase or decrease in sexual activity.

Sleep – you may find you need less or more sleep or experience sleep disturbances.

Mood changes – You may experience mood changes and even feel like spending time alone.

You may be preoccupied or find it difficult to concentrate.

There is no right or wrong way to grieve – and no set time-frame for your process.


What can help……

· Expressing emotions to and with others. You may want to write down your feelings.

· Talking about what happened.

· Keeping contact and seek help from friends or family / whanau or someone in your faith group.

· Eating well and keeping active.

· Taking time out to rest, sleep, think or have a break.

· Avoiding making any major decisions if possible.

· Live one day at a time and don’t expect too much of yourself.

· Seek professional help if you feel you need some help.


Where to seek professional help if you need it:

Your general practitioner may be able to provide support or refer you to an appropriate service.

Counsellors or psychotherapists in private practice.

Your local church.

Ministers of religion / spiritual advisors.

Employee Assistance Programme (if available in your work place).

Literature – many good books are available through Skylight, also age appropriate for children and adolescents, or your local bookseller.

The Funeral director that you dealt with may also have a bereavement program.

Grief Centre offers counselling and resources



Useful websites for information, resources and counsellors – Type ‘Grief’ in search bar

– Opens Home page

– Type ‘Grief’ in search bar ® G ® Grief and Loss