Support

The Coronovirus pandemic has resulted in an increased need for bereavement support amongst children and young people. Bereavement during this time can increase feelings of loneliness and isolation – especially if the death was sudden and unexpected. Being with friends and family can be one of the most helpful ways to cope after someone close to us dies. Unfortunately, at the moment, social distancing and self-isolation mean that we cannot offer the usual comfort and support through physical contact and simply being with each other.

Feelings

There is much talk about Covid-19, illness, loss and death at the moment. This may bring up difficult emotions and thoughts, reminding you of your own grief and those who have died in the past (including those who did not die as a result of Covid-19). It may also make you feel worried about yourself or a loved one dying. Reaching out for support can be daunting, especially in these times of only virtual contact. We will offer support, when the time is right, to help make sense of the complex emotions following the death of a loved one.

Guidance:

  • There may be feelings of anger and guilt – especially if you could not say goodbye. Similarly, there may be feelings of blame. Contact our helpline if such thoughts become overwhelming
  • Restrictions on funerals and attendance can result in a lack of closure. If you cannot attend a funeral, it may be worth considering having your own memorial at home. This could include: Looking at pictures., playing the person’s favourite music, lighting a candle or writing a speech
  • Talking about death can be difficult – especially for those already struggling with their mental health. Try not to ‘bottle up’ your feelings and let your GP and other support services know should things worsen
  • The easing of lockdown and resumption of some personal freedoms may cause feelings of excitement not understood by those bereaved
  • Many individuals working in front-line roles will have been exposed to very distressing scenes. Our Freephone helpline is there to support front-line workers

Suggestions

Keep in touch with others in any way permissible – try to stay in contact with bereaved friends and family even if you cannot visit

Look after yourself by eating and drinking properly, resting when you can. Try to get some fresh air or sunlight each day if it is safe to do so.

Keep to a regular routine as much as possible.

Ask for practical help from friends, family or neighbours if there is something you need help with and it is safe to do so

Don’t feel guilty if you are struggling. If things are getting worse, do not hesitate to speak to your GP, or call our Freephone helpline

Help someone else if you know they are struggling. Bearing witness and listening to a bereaved person talk about their feelings shows that you care.

The Grief Encounter helpline, grieftalk can be contacted from 9am – 9pm Monday to Friday. The grieftalk helpline number is 0808 802 0111, or you can chat online or even email us now, we are here to listen.