Loss is a traumatic event that touches every aspect of our lives. We inevitably worsen grief by fighting against it.
The five stages of grief give us some roadmap for understanding, and eventually accepting, the pain that accompanies rejection, divorce, addiction, death and disaster.
The five stages begin with denial, a conscious or unconscious defense mechanism through which we refuse the reality underlying our grief. We then move into anger, where we experience rage at ourselves, another person or the situation. Then we bargain for a solution to our pain. Escape is not a solution, and we next process through depression. Depression is an important part of the grieving process in which we begin to accept the reality of the situation. Finally, we achieve acceptance and come to terms with the loss. When we accept the event, we are able to deal with grief while living our lives positively and without negative repercussions.
If we fail to resolve grief, it can become a serious mental health issue. When faced with traumatic loss, many women have difficulty moving on. Here, the healing process does not resolve itself in time. Women risk additional issues such as anxiety, depression or substance abuse that take the place of the normal healing process.
It is imperative to allow grief to resolve itself. Sometimes, we can be ill equipped to do this ourselves. A residential treatment program enables women to process their issues so that the natural healing process can occur. Therapy can also aid this process.
With time and the proper approach, women are able to move through issues of grief and loss so that the memory no longer hinders their life. While the pain of loss will always exist, it no longer negatively affects mental health and women are able to live joyfully and healthfully.