Ten Tip Pledge for the bereaved

Bereavement is often a time of distorted thinking. We are emotional and this just helps put into perspective all that’s happening around us.

  1. I will survive even though I’m not sure how yet. Because as bad as it is now, it will never be as bad as getting the news. If I can survive that, I can survive anything.
  2. I, the grieving person, know that friends are afraid of saying the wrong thing but I’m going to understand that what others say, even if it’s not perfect, comes from a place of love. If the situation were reversed, I might not know the right thing to say either.
  3. For friends who have disappeared, I’ll grieve that, too, but also understand it’s not personal. I will seek support from others who are supportive.
  4. I also understand that friends who have not suffered this loss have limitations. They don’t understand fully, and their capacity to sit with me in my pain will vary. Which is why I will seek additional support from a close friend, group, or counselor, because I am not meant to grieve alone.
  5. I will help my loved ones (friends, peers, co-workers, family) understand how to help me because they want to know and cannot read my mind.
  6. I will respect where others of my family are in the grief process and not try to hide mine because they don’t want me to. And I know I wouldn’t want them to hide theirs. We need to grieve together and talk about the person we lost.
  7. I understand that my pain has a purpose and those agonizing moments are building blocks to emotional healing. It’s OK to let it in, and pushing it away only makes things worse.
  8. I will not allow someone else to grief shame me because I’m not bouncing back fast enough for them. This process takes as long as it takes.
  9. If I am feeling suicidal, I will reach out and ask for help, and if I feel like suicide, I will think of two friends or trusted adults with whom to share.
  10. I won’t always know the “why” behind my loved one’s death but I will get to a place one day when I can accept it and learn to live with grief in my life.

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind and co-author with Kim O'Brien PhD, LICSW of Emotionally Naked: A Teacher's Guide to Preventing Suicide and Recognizing Students at Risk. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my younger son, Charles to substance use disorder and suicide on June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, coping strategies/resilience, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Professional Speaker Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

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