What is grief? Grief is a complicated and normal response to loss. We quickly associate grief with death, but grief is also a normal response to a divorce, a move, the loss of a friendship, and any significant life change or loss.There is not a "right" way to grieve and there is not a "normal" amount of time that a person feels grief. Grief can involve many experiences, including shock/denial, sadness, guilt, anger, fear, and physical symptoms like changes in appetite or sleeping patterns, a preoccupation with thoughts related to the loss, and other deviations from "normal." Remember, these deviations are normal. People who are grieving need the support of friends and family. Many also need the support of a mental health professional.If you notice that the grieving symptoms to not improve over time, or worsen, you are encouraged to seek the help of a professional. The staff of your school counseling department can help you locate a counselor in your area.Here are some resources that may be helpful in understanding and responding to grief:
- This website includes important information about grief, particularly in children, about direct services provided by this organization, and about additional resources available. The excellent and comprehensive bibliography on this site includes picture books for children, as well as books for adults, who are coping with the death of a loved one, including pets, grandparents, siblings and parents.
- This website offers resources and activities for parents and professionals who are caring for a grieving child/adolescent.
- This website offers books and other resources available at a cost. Resources available include books written for children who are experiencing grief, as well as books written for parents.
- This website offers resources for people seeking grief support from the Christian faith. There are also resources that address the loss children experience during divorce.
- Camp Erin is a summer sleep-away camp for children who are dealing with grief.
- These resources are specific to grief related to a suicide death. The site includes information about support groups in the area.
- This website is dedicated to understanding and preventing suicide through research, education, and advocacy.
- This website offers a variety of modules to address grieving needs.