Christmas is coming; when I walk towards the clinic in Marquès de l’Túria, I see that Valencia begins to adorn itself, to be filled with lights, decorations, colors and joy.
Christmas is par excellence the time of the year for peace and happiness, for coming together as a family to celebrate. however, for some people who have just lost a loved one it can be a very painful time of year. All around us invites you to have fun, to celebrate, to share the joy, and yet for those who have suffered a loss recently, this festive atmosphere contrasts with the sadness you feel and the pain you feel. Even religious people experience a great contradiction in the face of the celebration of the birth of Christ and the death of a loved one, it is undoubtedly a difficult period.
Therefore, this vacation is a great challenge for those people who, in the face of heightened memories and emotions, feel a lot of sadness for this loss and also experience feelings of guilt.
Some of my patients tell me that laughing, having fun or enjoying a party generates a great sense of guilt in them and constantly confronted feelings. At Christmas, it is very common for this feeling of guilt and unease to appear, because everything invites you to celebrate and enjoy with your family. If you or a family member or friend are going through this situation, I would like to tell you that there are some guidelines to manage the Christmas period in a more enjoyable way.
Guidelines for dealing with Christmas in the face of the death of a loved one
Here are some tips to help you get through the grieving phase when you are dealing with the loss of a loved one.
1. Talk and plan as a family what you are going to do
The first thing I would like to recommend is that if you are a direct member of the family, have a family reunion to plan the parties, which celebrations are going to be and which are not, in case you don’t want to. , and okay – all in family.
2. Allow yourself to be loved by others
Even if you find yourself empty or empty, try to appreciate the displays of affection that others give you, And open your heart.
3. Get carried away and enjoy these dates and the rest of the family, they need you too
Let yourself be carried away by the spirit of Christmas, peace and love, even if it seems hard on one side, on the other, it is a good framework to face the loss, and to go through this duel that ‘we all have to face it through when a parent leaves us. What could be better than doing it with family, in company, remembering it and gradually overcoming your loss.
4. Create a reminder
Another guideline that works for many people is remember the person who left with a symbol. For example, put a candle, frame a beautiful photo we have of the person and place it in a visible place throughout Christmas, place an ornament on the Christmas tree that reminds us of the person, make a photo album and share it with the family during those days, and so on.
5. Don’t avoid the subject
Naming the person is often avoided as it hurts to talk about it, however it is good to remember this, especially on these dates. For example, before dinner, you can say a few words, ask for a toast, or perform a special action for that person, such as having a mass in their honor, for example.
6. Do not feel bad laughing, having fun with family or friends
This person who is gone would surely love you to enjoy these moments and that you will remember her with joy.
7. Adapt this process to your needs
Despite everything I say, first of all I must understand that everyone needs their own grieving process, their own time, In both cases. There are people who need to cry and others who don’t, there are people who need to express their feelings and others don’t or can’t, or decide to do so at another time.
First of all, everyone should respect themselves and be patient with their own feelings. Little by little, everything will return to its course, but we must give time. In some cases, however, the duel becomes an overwhelming process for oneself, and professional help is required. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or need more information. A professional psychologist can help you overcome steps that you may not be able to take on your own.
I hope I’ve helped you.