I didn’t care if I went swimming or not, even though swimming is my favorite activity. I didn’t care what I ate, even though looking forward to delicious food and yummy tastes used to be a daily pleasure. It seemed like nothing mattered anymore.

It is easy to get stuck in depression during the grieving process. Instead of moving forward toward the light at the end of the tunnel, you could drop down into depression and not even know you are depressed.

If you don’t have a bereavement support group or grief counselor giving you feedback about your mental health state, you could get permanently stuck in depression. Depression is a dark, heavy energy that is often confused with the stages of grief and grieving. However, depression is not one of the natural stages in the grieving process.

During grief there is a normal, natural process of grieving that consists of feeling your authentic emotions and feelings. This healthy emotional journey takes many turns and twists. Grieving has its own natural rhythms of ups and downs. You also have your unique emotional memories you must experience to fully mourn and grieve your loved one.

However, within the natural turns and twists of bereavement, you could unconsciously turn off your authentic feelings and emotions of grief without knowing it. When you turn off your healing emotions and feelings of grief, you get stuck in depression. When you inhibit your healthy emotions, you automatically become numb and blah. Soon, you do not care about anything, nothing in your life is enjoyable and you are depressed.

Depression is one of the major reasons it is important to stay intimately connected to a few emotionally safe people during your bereavement. Welcome and appreciate honest, loving feedback about your mood and behaviors. If anyone mentions that you are numb, blah or distant, even a little bit, this means you could be depressed.

There is no right or wrong or good or bad to how you should grieve. To stay in the natural grieving process, you need to feel sad when you feel sad. And blue when you feel blue. It is normal for your sadness to linger and bounce around. It is normal to feel bad and then feel good.

However, depression is a stuck place where you are not allowing your authentic emotions and feelings to ebb and flow. If you do not feel your grief fully, you cannot heal your heart and become emotionally stronger. One of the ways you can tell if you are feeling healthy grief is that you will feel better after a good cry. You feel lighter and richer after you feel your hurt and pain.

So the way to avoid depression during the natural grief and grieving process is to stay with yourself as your hurt naturally and normally occurs in your life. As you touch your husband’s favorite shirt, a flood of emotions occurs. Do not run away from your grief. Stay with yourself as you feel what you feel. Your authentic emotional pain will move you into the depths of your loving heart.

It is not a sign of weakness to need emotional support as you go through difficult periods of grief. An emotionally safe grief counselor or psychologist can help you get out of depression into the healthy stages of the grieving process.

Your emotional hurt naturally opens your heart and deepens your connection with yourself. The healthy grief and grieving process makes you emotionally stronger and more alive. Reaching the light at the end of the tunnel is the way Mother Nature intended you to get through the realities of life and death.

When I noticed I was living in the dumps, I knew what to do to get back in touch with my authentic feelings and emotions. So I put my comforting audio in my ears to help me stay in my hurt so I could move forward into more emotional energy and aliveness. Thank goodness, swimming is pleasurable again.



Doris Jeanette

Holistic Psychologist, Dr. Doris Jeanette is the author of “Opening the Heart,” an emotional healing guide used and highly praised by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, MD. She is a licensed psychologist with 33 years of experience healing broken hearts, director of the Center for the New Psychology, founder of www.drjeanette.com radio host of Live at the Edge at www.newvoices.com and her popular, free weekly newsletter “The Vibrant Moment” has inspired thousands for six years. Dr. Jeanette directs The Holistic Psychology Mentoring Program for people interested in learning about emotions, energy and effectiveness. (http://www.drjeanette.com/mentorprogram.html) Doris Jeanette, Psy.D. Center for New Psychology 503 S. 21 St Philadelphia, PA 19146 http://www.drjeanette.com Speaker, columnist, radio host and author of Opening the Heart, Overcoming Anxiety Naturally and 13 other self help products. Dr. Jeanette appeared on the radio show “Healing the Grieving Heart” discussing “How to Open Your Heart After Hurt.” To hear Dr. Jeanette being interviewed on this show by Dr. Gloria & Dr. Heidi Horsley, click on the following link; www.voiceamericapd.com/health/010157/horsley062206.mp3

More Articles Written by Doris