5 things that can complicate the grief of losing a loved one

Psychological grief is one of the most common emotional disorders that are worked on throughout the process of psychotherapy. While it is true that feeling great pain at the loss of a loved one is normal and does not in itself constitute a psychological disorder, it is also true that it can sometimes last too long or give way to a feeling that the circumstances are beyond the person.

Here we will focus on when the loss situation emotionally overwhelms those who experience it, and we will see what they are. factors that can lead to a duel complication to the point of needing professional help.

    What is psychological grief?

    By psychological mourning, we mean the phenomenon that occurs when a loss produces a significant emotional alteration in a person, due to the emotional bond that unites him to what is no longer there.

    Usually, the most relevant and painful cases of psychological grief arise after the death of a loved one.Although technically, they can also occur by losing other important things for oneself: a home, a job or even a part of the body, for example. Either way, we’ll focus here on what happens when you lose a loved one.

    As its name suggests, psychological mourning is the process of mourning experienced by people, beyond the cultural and anthropological phenomena of expression of loss, which are easy to observe (rituals, changes in the pieces to be worn, etc. ).

    So, psychological grief is what is carried within and subtly expressed through the actions of individuals, being unique in each person. However, in the context of psychology, the term “bereavement” is often used simply to refer to this phenomenon, given the context in which it is spoken.

    Grief is normal and part of the experience of loss. However, there are cases when this discomfort reaches too high a degree of intensity, or gives rise to the appearance of other important psychological problems, and lasts too long; in these cases, there is what we call “complicated grief”, an emotional disorder which is a reason for going to psychotherapy. and that it is often linked to the consolidation of a trauma.

    It is important not to let the problem become chronic, as in these cases it gives rise to memories related to the loss situation creating a very deep and painful emotional beauty in our mind which often makes us feel bad by not not being able to relive those memories in a normal way, from the perspective of someone who has already overcome the situation.

    Fortunately, both in cases where the complicated duel begins to occur and in those where it has already been consolidated, it is possible to achieve good emotional management of all of this if professional psychological help is available.

    5 elements that facilitate the appearance of the complicated duel

    Here is some factors that increase the risk of bereavement due to the loss of a loved one complicated by giving way to a psychological problem.

    Of course, you have to keep in mind that this is only an increase in the odds, and that none of these elements is, in itself, the cause of a persistent or too painful psychological duel. . In addition, there are cases when none of these criteria are met and despite this, complicated bereavement appears, requiring professional help.

    1. Presence of previous psychological alterations

    If the person had already developed psychological disorders and these have not resolved or have not been treated, the combination of this phenomenon with the onset of bereavement can lead to the generation of a new emotional complication. The presence of psychopathologies such as major depression and post-traumatic stress is particularly relevant.

      2. The death of a child

      If the deceased person was a minor, especially if it is a grieving son or daughter, the chances of a problematic form of bereavement are greatly increased.

      3. Death occurred during a catastrophic event or very suddenly

      When the loss occurred in an abusive situation, It is easier for the duel to be complicated.

      To a lesser extent, if the death occurred very unexpectedly, it also increases the chances that over a long period of time the person will feel the situation overwhelming them. This is because in cases where it was already suspected that a death would occur within a short period of time (for example, in the event of a serious illness diagnosed), the person has more time to prepare for this loss.

      4. Alterations associated with stress or anxiety

      The feeling of overwhelming emotion produced by bereavement can become almost unbearable if in itself the person was facing a present full of pressures and “fronts to fight on”, such as a difficult work situation, lack of money, etc.

      5. Isolation and lack of social support

      People who are grieving in a situation of social isolation, especially when it is a question of a loneliness perceived as such by oneself, Have fewer resources to cope with this experience and are more likely to have problems dealing with emotional grief.

      Are you looking for psychological support in the face of psychological grief?

      If you are going through a psychological grieving process, contact our team of professionals. Fr Psychomaster we offer psychotherapy to people of all ages through intervention modalities of proven efficacy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy or EMDR therapy, among others.

      You can count on our services both in our center located in Madrid and through online video call therapy. On this page you will find more information about how we work and our contact details.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Archer, J. (1999). The nature of grief: the evolution and psychology of reactions to loss. London, England: Routledge.
      • Bayés, R. (2001). Psychology of suffering and death. Barcelona: Martínez Roca.
      • Bonanno, GA (2004). Loss, Trauma and Human Resistance: Have we underestimated the human ability to thrive after extremely aversive events ?. American psychologist. 59 (1): 20-28.
      • Neria, Y .; Crude R; Litz B. et al. (2007). Prevalence and psychological correlations of complicated pain in adults with pain 2.5 to 3.5 years after the 9/11 attacks. Journal of Traumatic Stress; 20: pages 251 to 262.
      • Winegard BM; Reynolds T .; Baumeister RF; Winegard B .; Maner JK (2014). Grieving works as an honest indicator of commitment. Examination of personality and social psychology. 18 (2): 168-186.
      • Worden, WJ (2004). Bereavement treatment: psychological counseling and therapy. Barcelona: Paidós.

      Leave a Comment