Christmas can be a difficult time of year for anyone, we are constantly shown adverts with happy families all gathered together celebrating and enjoying time together. This isn't the reality for many people particularly those who are experiencing grief. 

You may feel there are expectations on you to attend events or visit friends or relatives and it can be a painful reminder of your loss. So how can you cope with grief at Christmas? There are some steps you can take which may help.

Plan in advance

Set yourself some boundaries, things you feel comfortable with and stick to these. Allow yourself some time alone to grieve if this is what you think you will need. Be realistic about what you can manage and be kind to yourself giving yourself space. 


Find a way to remember your loved one

This could take many forms for example, talking about some memories you have, lighting a candle, playing some of their favourite music or speaking to them either silently or out loud. You could also visit their grave if they have one or a place that was special to them. 


Self care

Grief can be tiring and you may feel drained. It can be difficult to prioritise your own needs however, getting plenty of rest, eating well, keeping hydrated and paying attention to your body can help you manage better. 


Talk to someone 

Grief can feel very lonely and this can be exacerbated at Christmas when people generally spend time with family and you may not be at work. If you are struggling can you speak to your family and friends and let them know how you are feeling? People cope with grief in different ways and there is no right or wrong way, it can help to communicate your emotions.

There is support available if you need it so don't be afraid to reach out. You can contact Cruse Bereavement Support and there are many helpful resources available on their website. You can also contact the Samaritans 24/7 by calling 116 123. 

If you think you would like to explore counselling to help you with your grief please get in touch, I would be happy to assist.