• Warning signs of complicated grief

    Tick yours

     □ Denial of feelings about the loss; no external signs of grieving, as if nothing had happened.

    □ Being unable to talk fully about, acknowledge, or express the loss or express the loss, or express feelings about it.  Can’t seem to be able to cry.

    □ Unending, unchanging or prolonged distress, sadness, depression or guilt – still intensely preoccupied with the person who died.

    □ Acting out of character;

    -with money, such as spending extravagantly

    -by being sexually promiscuous

    -making major life changes in lifestyle or activities.

    □ Self-neglect: disinterest in personal appearance, not eating properly or not taking prescribed medication.

    □ Excessive use of alcohol or sedatives.

    □ Feeling agitated, restless, or manic.

    □ Prolonged lethargy, fatigue; noticeable physical and mental slowing down.

    □ Have become very absorbed in, and preoccupied with, helping and supporting others.

    □ Using work (working more than before and most of the time) or some other activity, as a way of keeping busy; ‘getting on with things’, in order not to have to feel the pain of grief.

    □ Unnerving fear (or phobia) about illness or death.

    □ Being careless, reckless, taking unnecessary risks (e.g. driving fast or dangerously).

    □ Having thoughts about suicide, death or self-harm.

    □ Feeling strong guilt about things other than actions taken or not taken as the time of death.

    □ Have been functioning poorly for a prolonged period.

    □ Strongly fixated on self-worthlessness.

    □ Hearing voices or seeing strange things other than hearing or momentarily seeing the deceased person.

    If some of these signs or symptoms are familiar

     

    TAKE ACTION NOW.  Arrange to speak to Julia Cull, Psychologist.  She has a special interest and expertise in grief, having spent 4 years working in a hospice.

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