You can expect with Adult Grief that..
• your grief will take longer than most people think.
• your grief will take more energy than what you would have imagined.
• your grief will depend on how you perceive the loss.
• your grief will entail mourning not only for the actual person who died, but also for all the hopes, dreams and unfulfilled
expectations you had with that person. You will also grieve for those needs that go unmet because of the death.
• you will grieve for what you have already lost and what you have lost for the future.
• you will grieve for many things symbolic and tangible, not just the death alone.
• your grief will resurrect old issues, emotions and unresolved conflicts from the past.
• your grief will create some identity confusion as a result of your major loss.
• your grief may cause you to begin a search for meaning and you may find yourself questioning your faith and/or
philosophy of life.
• feel as though the loss isn’t real, that it actually didn’t occur.
• become obsessed with the death and experience an intense preoccupation with the deceased.
• have a need to recount things about your loved one and retell the events and experiences surrounding the death.
• feel a tightness in your throat or heaviness in your chest.
• have an empty feeling in your stomach and either loose your appetite or begin eating more.
• have difficulty sleeping and dream of your loved one frequently.
• feel as though you need to take care of the other people who are uncomfortable around you by politely not talking
about your feelings of loss.
• sense the loved one’s presence. You may find yourself expecting the person to walk in the door and the usual time,
hear his/her voice or even see his/her face.
• experience grief spasms. These acute feelings of grief that occur suddenly with no warning. You may find you cry at
• have a combination of feelings ~ anger, guilt, frustration, irritability, annoyance, or intolerance with yourself and others.
• feel guilty or angry over things that happened or didn’t happen in the relationship with the deceased.
• feel restless and look for activity, but find it difficult to concentrate.
• wander aimlessly around the house. You may find yourself disorganized, starting but not finishing tasks.
• feel your mood change over the slightest thing. You may wonder if you’re going “crazy”?! (…You’re not!)
• assume mannerisms or traits of your loved one.
• alternate between periods of seeking the company of others and withdrawing, preferring to be alone.