Your grief is normal and natural.
Grief is the normal and natural reaction to losing someone or something that we care about. There is nothing wrong with how sad we feel when we lose a pet.
We don’t deal with death and loss well as a society. Many people find it hard to talk to their friends, family, and co-workers in response to someone else’s grief and tragedy. We don’t know what to say, and oftentimes we say nothing at all. Death makes us uncomfortable, and many people are afraid of talking about or even being around it.
As a result, people can say terrible things to us. Even well-meaning people can give “advice” on how to grieve, what we “should” do, or how we “should” feel. We’ve been programmed to believe that sadness and grief are problems, something wrong that needs to be corrected. That’s just not true.
So many people just don’t get the level of hurt and pain that accompanies the loss of a pet. As a result, they can make hurtful and insensitive comments. This insensitivity always hurts.
It’s important to know that many well-meaning people find it hard to talk about grief and loss. They don’t know what to do or say, so oftentimes they end up saying nothing at all. If this is the case, try not to let their “apparent” lack of response be indicative of a lack of caring.
There is nothing that needs to be fixed. We have lost. We’re supposed to feel this way. It’s okay to feel this way. Right now, one of the best things we can do is to find a person that we can really talk with about our feelings. Someone who will be supportive and just listen.
Even in this pandemic, we can find support online. We have free groups that meet every Sunday at PetCloud where we create a space to hold this grief. If you don’t have someone for support right now, come join us. Talking about and sharing our grief is the best way to feel validated and to start healing.
The silence is deafening.