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Grief: Dealing With Feelings of Insecurity

Overview

Grief is a natural response to the loss of someone or something very important to you. After a major loss, you may feel insecure due to changes in your finances, family relationships, and support systems. It may be hard to handle new decisions, understand information, and take care of your personal duties. You may feel out of control. And you may not remember some of the events that happened around you.

It's common to have these feelings when so much about your life may be changing. It may take some time to adjust after a major loss.

Tips for coping with feelings of insecurity

These ideas may help if you're feeling overwhelmed by the changes in your life and are insecure about how to handle them.

  • Make notes about things that you want to remember.

    Keep an account of important events and facts. Refer to it during the day if you are having a hard time taking it all in.

  • Postpone major decisions.

    Give yourself time to adapt to the loss before you make any big changes in your life.

  • Ask for help when you need it.

    If you're confused or can't seem to get things done, reach out to people who can help and guide you.

  • Gather as much information as you can about what is happening.

    But don't try to take in more than you can handle. If you feel overwhelmed by the amount of information someone is giving you, ask them to stop and plan a time to talk later.

  • Know when to get help.

    If you're depressed or thinking about suicide or self-harm, talk to someone about your feelings. You can call the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 or 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). Or text HOME to 741741 to access the Crisis Text Line.

When should you call for help?

Call 911 or other emergency services if:

  • You think you cannot stop yourself from harming or killing yourself.
  • You hear voices that frighten you, especially if the voices tell you to hurt yourself or other people.
  • Someone who is grieving tries to harm themself or someone else.
  • Someone who is grieving threatens to hurt someone else or makes threats of suicide.

Where to get help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

If you or someone you know talks about suicide, self-harm, a mental health crisis, a substance use crisis, or any other kind of emotional distress, get help right away. You can:

  • Call the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988.
  • Call 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255).
  • Text HOME to 741741 to access the Crisis Text Line.

Consider saving these numbers in your phone.

Call a doctor if:

  • You feel out of control, unsafe, or empty (without any feeling) for more than a couple of weeks.
  • You can't stop yourself from thinking about death or suicide.
  • You are concerned that you're using substances to avoid emotions and thoughts, such as drinking more alcohol than you normally do.
  • You have been grieving longer than you expected.
  • You or someone you know has symptoms of depression. These symptoms include feeling sad and losing interest in most daily activities.

Credits

Current as of: June 16, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Anne C. Poinier MD - Internal Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Jean S. Kutner MD, MSPH - Geriatric Medicine, Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Carolyn Brzezicki RN, GC-C - Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine

 

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