Common Reactions to Loss

  • Denial, shock, numbness
  • Fear and anxiety - "How can I go on?" "Can I survive this terrible pain?"
  • Sadness and depression - feelings of loneliness, isolation, hopelessness, self-pity.
  • Sorrow, pain and longing.
  • Anger - "How could she do this to me?" "How could God let this happen?"
  • Guilt - "I should have been more caring." "I should have told her I loved her." "My life is going on and his isn't."
  • Confusion and lack of concentration.
  • Grief spasms - intense periods of emotional release, usually with a lot of crying.
  • Search for meaning.
  • Withdrawal from social relationships.

Physical symptoms - decreased appetite, energy, motivation; difficulty sleeping; weight loss or gain; lethargy; chest pain, pressure, or discomfort; feeling that something is stuck in your throat and many other physical sensations. You also may be more vulnerable to physical illness.