It is no news that talking to someone helps when you are in a difficult situation. But today, I am going to unfold some useful facts about how to use and avoid speech during our mourning period, in order to help keep our head.
Some people are good at talking than others, though they might behave totally different at a time of bereavement. Simply put, though we could be talkative in normal life, we might go dumb with the shock and the pain of losing a loved one.
Our reaction to a great loss like death is something that we cannot predict, and yet there is nothing to worry about such unexpected, unnatural behaviour if it happens, because it is all normal. Whatever our immediate reaction is, most probably it might subside smoothly with or without the support of a therapist. In case this does not happen over time, and instead there are signs of our mental condition spiralling down, then there is a problem – which needs professional attention.
Back to the post, as a rule of thumb, talking about your deep feelings with someone else, while you are in mourning, could help you in many ways than one. First, let’s have a look at some key benefits of constructive conversation.
a) Keep tab on your mental health
Whether you are wordy or not, there is always an internal conversation going on in your mind. At the time of bereavement, this internal dialogue could take you to extreme opinions, which are not sensible. Unlocking your mind to an outsider is important because they can then recognise how healthy your state of mind is and what level of support and attention you need.
b) Relieve the heavy heart
Speaking about how you feel is an excellent way to reduce the heaviness in your innermost self and to obtain an instant relief (though it might be short termed at the beginning). Emotional trauma, if built-up internally, could even lead to its physical by-products like heart pain, churning stomach, breathing difficulty, racing heart, sleeping and eating disorders, weakened immunity etc. So, it is really important that you relieve the weight in your chest as and when you feel it by engaging in conversation with others.
c) Help sort out the feelings
Conversation with your family, friends or counsellor (if any), helps you to sort out your incoherent feelings, and to learn and remember counterarguments against your own negative and destructive thoughts, if any. The gradual realignment of your thought process takes you onto the healing path, away from the risk of falling into further devastation.
d) Build confidence
When you discuss with someone you trust about your current circumstances, path ahead, feasible solutions for your practical problems at hand, as well as the support available for your physical and mental requirements, it builds up confidence in you about your resilience, even if you initially thought you would never recover from your agony.
e) Build resilience
Moreover, when you are engaged in a constructive dialogue about your feelings and experience, without you knowing it you are comprehending your bereavement experience in terms of reality. This means, you are inevitably sharpening your wisdom. Anyone who experienced bereavement accept this transformation genuinely when they say “I am not who I was”. This, in other terms, indicates that they are more resilient and mature now than before.
Now that we discussed about the merits of talking to someone about our feelings while we are suffering from grief, let’s discuss more about how we can exploit these benefits of talking during our mourning period.
There are times that your emotional stress overwhelms you, causing an unbearably heavy heart, while you do not have company (you are alone at the moment). Your best choice in such a situation is to talk to anybody, even a stranger, who is nearby and looking approachable and decent. You do not have to talk about your distress or your circumstances, but even a casual talk, about weather or traffic, would do the trick. You only need is a momentary distraction to avoid the pang of heartache. If you are sensible enough to realize that the heaviness is accumulating in your chest while you are literally alone, just try this technique. This really works like a lifeline…
It doesn’t matter if you are normally a reserved person, who is in a limited social circle, it is quite sensible now to befriend more people, maybe from your gym, neighbourhood, or swimming club etc. Coming out of your shell to develop some casual acquaintances (not particularly to open up your mind about your loss), will help keep your trauma under control, as having more people around you creates more opportunities for dialogue – any kind of dialogue. (In addition, who knows, you might also find your future best friend among these new friends!)
At times of conversations with others, you might find that they are not helpful the way you expected. This is a very common situation. Remember it is none other than a clash of temperaments or a miscommunication: in real, I am sure, your partner (the person you were talking to) really meant to be supportive. Hence, it is best to be forthright and tell them what you need at the moment, be it listening to you, talking to you, or no talking at all, etc. In case you don’t know what you need from others, just do trial and error; as you go on, you will unravel the situation.
Do not worry, if you don’t want to talk – there is nothing weird in it. As I said at the beginning, even chatty ones turn up preferring silence. Just know that our individual response to grief is unique and also inconsistent – you might want to talk to someone sometimes and need to be alone at other times – which is all fine. There is a good sense within you, which keeps you safe and tells you if something is wrong, so if that is the case, you should tell someone how you feel, immediately. Anyway, it is advisable to have at least one close person in life to confide in, because then they will sense if you need mental health support.
Finally, expressing yourself does not have to involve mouthing, or words at all. Instead, you could engage in writing, painting, crafting, or any other task that exudes your built-up emotions from your psyche. It is a matter of passing the most critical period of your mourning safely, so no matter which medium you use to relieve your mind in short run as long as it does not harm yourself.
I really hope this was useful. Now, it’s our time for some useful discussion. I know you have something to talk about what happened the last time you opened up your inner self. There will be a lot to learn from your experience about miscommunications and problems around making an effective conversation. Sharing your thoughts would help all of us, so please leave your feedback below on what you think…