Grief and the Pandemic

Grieving the loss of a loved one is challenging under any circumstance, but adding in a life-altering global pandemic can create additional feelings of uncertainty. The limitations on gathering have led many of the families we’ve served in the last year to feel isolated in their grief. We take very seriously our commitment to you and your family and want to provide you with some resources to help you navigate some of the complicated emotions you may be experiencing.

After losing your loved one during a pandemic, you may have faced challenges such as:

  • the inability to spend time with your loved one before their death
  • being unable to have typical funeral rituals to begin the healing process
  • no in-person support from friends, family, coworkers and faith communities

There are several things you can do to help your grieving process. When it’s safe to do so, it can be helpful to:

  • hold an in-person memorial service for your loved one
  • visit your loved one’s final resting place
  • write about your feelings and reactions to your loved one’s passing in a private journal
  • engage in light exercise
  • talk about your thoughts and feelings with trusted friends and family

These circumstances may have created problems in your personal grief process. For example, it may feel difficult to:

  • come to terms with your loss, especially if you were unable to attend the funeral
  • find the time and energy to grieve as you wrestle with other pandemic-related issues
  • visit with family and friends for support
  • seek assistance from a grief group or mental health professional

It’s important to remember that grief is a process that takes months and years to navigate, not days and weeks. Even under normal circumstances, your grief process will likely last longer than you expect. However, there are several signs that you or a grieving loved one may need additional help from a mental health professional, including:

  • feeling as if your grief gets worse and worse each week
  • experiencing thoughts of self-harm
  • using substances (i.e., alcohol, drugs or medications) to an extent that they are becoming dangerous or impairing your daily functioning
  • worsening of previous mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, etc.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please consider reaching out to a professional grief counselor.

We are dedicated to helping you navigate your grief throughout your journey.
Our funeral home has many resources for you to use if you should want them. Please do not hesitate to ask.

*Created by Dr. Jason Troyer, PhD