These days, we’re more exposed to tragedy than ever. Gone are the days when we just saw it on the nightly news. Today, we open our computers to chaos almost every day.
And collectively, we all ask the same question: How do those families go on?
Although it sounds cliché, we truly don’t know how strong we are until we’re tested. When coping is your only option, you eventually find a way.
That’s not to say it’s easy. When a family suffers a tragic loss, it’s something that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.
Here are some tips for getting through the difficult times:
Acknowledge the hard times
There are seasons for everything in our lives, good and bad. And even when you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, know that it’s there. Your life will undoubtedly be different on the other side of this struggle, but you’ll find new ways to enjoy yourself. Just as there are seasons of loss and extreme hurt, there will be seasons of sunshine again.
Draw from experience
Think about the last struggle you endured as a family. Maybe it was the death of a loved one or a divorce, but you got through it together. Your life after the loss probably wasn’t the same, but you found a way to make it enjoyable again. This tragedy may be worse than the last, but you’ll overcome it in the same way.
Take care of yourself first
On every flight, flight attendants stress the importance of putting on your mask before helping others. This is because you need to be breathing to help other people. It’s a similar situation when you’re trying to overcome a difficult time. You need to be as whole as possible in order to take care of others.
Find others who have suffered similar losses
Look for support groups for people who have gone through similar situations. You may also find comfort and advice in self-help books written by survivors. It’s little comfort to know someone else has suffered, but it may be comforting to hear how they managed to pick their lives up again.
Pick up the pieces
Whether your family is dealing with death, divorce or addiction, you all have work to do. Focus on healing the family members that are hurting the worst, and then take the necessary steps to move forward. That may mean searching for professional assistance to get help for a loved one. Or it may mean making arrangements for life without someone you love. These moments will never be easy, but it’s important to focus on forward movement when you can.
When you suffer a deep loss, it changes everything. Not only do you have to work through feelings of grief and disappointment, but you also have to re-learn how to live in a world where such a tragedy took place. Your family won’t be the same afterwards, but you can still have a full and amazing life together.