Fear of death: symptom or cause?

The fear of death is natural and responds to the survival instinct that characterizes us as living beings. It is a primary emotion caused by real or perceived danger.

On another side, fear has an adaptive function and is necessary for survival. In this case, the fear of VOCID-19 activates self-care behaviors and other people.

The pandemic presented us, without warning, an irresistible reality about the possible proximity of death to our familiesEven we and society today hardly know how to handle it because they were not prepared for it.

In this society where material well-being, consumption and leisure are the values ​​that control the system, death did not fit and remained in unnatural anonymity.

    The fear of death and its impact on society

    Children don’t go to the funerals of their own parents, even beloved grandparents, or their own parents. exists as a fictitious bubble of protection created by adults that deprives children of the awareness of death, And even the farewells of their loved ones, a ritual necessary to properly close the cycle of mourning.

    When I was little, I saw coffins pass by in the streets of the village, on the shoulders of relatives, followed by their entourage and revered by all the pedestrians, who silently bowed in a respectable gesture to death. The bells announced death in the same way that they rang for joy in the festive moments of life. The children went with the family to the vigil, the parents accompanied us all until the sorrow of the farewell. Many children (called schoolchildren) accompanied the priest to the end. And all this has given us a vision of life that is more realistic, responsible and less reckless than that perceived by young people today.

    All this educational obscurantism in our current society, it has triggered an emotional reaction from people who often go so far as to somatize, In some cases, resulting in severe anxiety, depression or loss of appropriate coping skills in stressful situations.

    Many children, adolescents and adults (especially essential health workers) come to the consultation early in the coronavirus pandemic with various symptoms, but all of them hide the fear and, above all, the fear of death.

    The fear of the death of loved ones and his own death has arisen. But are we only talking about death as a fact that is part of life? No, there are many ramifications: fear of dying alone, fear of dying with suffering and pain, fear of not finding meaning in your life, fear of not having lived long enough to make our dreams come true, fear of putting it all in. end. and many more.


    If you experience anxiety, shortness of breath, dizziness, tremors, sweating, tachycardia, chest pain, and nausea, it is important that you go inside and connect to what is really happening to you, and in particular listen and accept your real fearsAs it will be easier to manage if you identify them.

    There are other symptoms that, in addition to occurring in adults, are the ones that alert children and adolescents to the need for help. We talk about nightmares, panic attacks, irritability, insomnia, sadness, fear of going out or going to school and addictive behavior.

    What to do?

    The best way to overcome the fear of getting sick and dying is to talk about it; silent suffering can take root and diminish the quality of life. It’s good to learn about death and come to terms with reality with a healthy dose of positive thinking.

    To help children and adolescents, we need to talk to them as a family, to tell them about our loved ones who are already dead but who are part of our hearts. this it will give them a sense of belonging to the family system and a sense of timeSomething they need to find some peace at this time and most importantly, it is absolutely necessary to listen with interest to what they think about respect, their fears and their fantasies about death. The worst fears are not those that come to us in life, the worst fears are imaginary ones.

    To cope with the death of a loved one, it is essential to perform a farewell ritual, Share these rituals with children and build cohesion with family and friends. We are all on the same boat. At this historic moment, many are silent about their pain, fear and helplessness, not knowing what to do with these emotions.

    Don’t hesitate to ask for help if you need it. You’re not alone. If you need professional assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me. I will be happy to help you.

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