At various points in our lives, we all will experience loss, grief, and bereavement. Despite the universal nature of these experiences, we shy away from them or turn a blind eye when others are suffering. When it is us, we often feel lost and isolated with nowhere to turn. Obviously, grief and loss are difficult and challenging experiences to work through, but life for the bereaved can be enhanced by understanding how to recognize and respond to grief. This chapter explores the concepts of grief, mourning, and bereavement and addresses some important questions about these human experiences. It also examines the relationship between grief, loss, and the COVID-19 pandemic.
After completing the chapter materials, you should have an understanding of:
- What grief, mourning, and bereavement are, including the relationships between the concepts.
- The different and appropriate ways to support those experiencing loss and grief.
- How to navigate grief on social media.
- The relationship between loss, collective/national grief, and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Questions to Think About When Completing Chapter Materials
- In what ways can the use of social media help the grieving process? In what ways can it hinder it? How might you change your behaviour and language on social media given what you are learning in this chapter?
- Reflect on your experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. What types of losses have you experienced? How did you grieve these losses? What do you think could have been done to support you better? How have you supported family and friends with their loses?
- How can you take what you’ve learned about supporting loved ones through grief and implement that knowledge into your own life?