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FINDING HOPE IN THE MIDST OF

Spouse Loss

When your spouse dies, your world changes. When you grieve, you can feel both physical and emotional pain.

People who are grieving may have trouble sleeping, problems with concentration, difficulty making decisions. You may have many conflicting emotions, and may feel numb, shocked, and fearful. You may feel guilty for being the one who is still alive. At some point, you may even feel angry at your spouse for leaving you. All of these feelings are normal. There are no rules about how you should feel and there is no right or wrong way to mourn.

In addition to dealing with feelings of loss, you also may need to figure out a way to move forward. Some people feel better sooner than they expect, but others may take longer.

Self-Care while Grieving the
Loss of a Spouse

Take care of your health. Grief can be hard on your physical health. It can help to exercise regularly, eat nutritious food, and try to get enough sleep
Take time to adjust. Go at a comfortable pace and be easy on yourself. There is no rush.

Rely on your support system. Let family and friends know when you want to talk about your spouse. They may be grieving too and may welcome the chance to share memories. When possible, accept their offers of help and company.

Outings and activities. Find an activity that you like to do such as reading, sports, crafts, travel, or music. You may have fun and meet people who like to do the same thing.

Adjust your social life. Try group activities. With married friends, think about informal outings like walks, picnics, or movies rather than couple’s events that remind you of the past.

See your doctor. Keep up with visits to your healthcare provider. If it has been a while, schedule a physical and bring your doctor up to date on any pre-existing medical conditions and any new health issues that may be of concern. Let your healthcare provider know if you are having trouble taking care of your everyday activities, like getting dressed or fixing meals.

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