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Old 03-15-2018, 10:42 PM
Status: "Free at last!" (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: Somwhere
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I think grief is grief, whether it is for someone who was an integral part of your life, a pet, an acquaintance, or even a celebrity. Being involved in a catastrophe or having a major illness can trigger grief, too.

Each of these can have a profound effect on someone, and it can be hard for another person to see why.
I love the term griefporn, but it does seem a little judgemental.
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Old 03-15-2018, 11:02 PM
 
Location: San Francisco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
If it isn't prying too much, do you think the loss of the ongoing textual relationship was more - or less - devastating than the loss of the future possibilities of your being together physically - or was it just different?
No, it's not prying too much. The daily relationship is what I miss the most. Every day I think of things I wish I could tell him, and I miss the emotional support we gave each other. Most of all I miss his wonderful dry British sense of humor. I would love to know what he would have said about Trump's election because he was so convinced that such a thing could never happen.

The future possibilities were only in theory. It's hard to grieve for something you never had. Also, I was realistic and accepted that there was a good possibility that Jeff and I would not be as compatible in person as we were in text messages. I never told him this, but I felt that the relationship we had, just as it was, was so rewarding in itself that I would have been OK if that's all we ever had. It was sad, though, giving up the fantasy of what might have been, but not as devastating as losing the relationship.
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Old 03-16-2018, 12:07 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
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That makes sense. Thank you. I'm sorry for your loss of a great friend.
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Old 03-16-2018, 01:20 AM
 
Location: San Francisco
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Thank you, harry chickpea. Your kind words mean a lot to me. I'd been lurking in Grief and Mourning for quite a while, not feeling I "deserved" to tell my story because one, my late friend and I had never even met; and two, we were married to other people. Many of the posts I read here responding to others' losses were helpful and comforting to me, too, and I'll always be grateful to the C-D community for getting me through a difficult time.
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Old 03-16-2018, 12:36 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Well said. I'm trying for myself to tease out what doesn't quite fit, in that part of her grief involves a type of nostalgia and even fantasy. The conservative part of me has hackles raised that she hasn't "earned" her grief, while from a compassionate point of view her experience is real for her.

An issue that some of us have observed is an individual - at some obvious distance from a deceased - appearing to grieve MORE than individuals closer to that person. In such cases, I sometimes wonder if their grief is more about their own issues than the deceased. Is the grief intrinsic to the death, or is it intrinsic to the individual?

Your post also brings up the point that those of us who experience loss after a long illness have already had some time to reconcile the fact that a wonderful future is not in the cards.
Sometimes I'll find myself grieving the death of an acquaintance as much or more than the death of someone closer to me. For me, I think "misplacing" the grief makes it safer. The woman who wrote the article had experienced a lot of loss in her life so maybe feeling deeply the death of someone she did not actually know very well allowed her to feel the sadness that she would not allow herself to feel at the other deaths.

In a related way, sometimes allowing myself to feel sadness or grief over someone not particularly close to me opens up floodgates of emotion and I feel like I'm feeling all the sadness in the world at once. The sadness is real, even if the immediate cause of it is not apparent.
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Old 03-16-2018, 01:44 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,863 posts, read 51,373,474 times
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Originally Posted by Marlow View Post
Sometimes I'll find myself grieving the death of an acquaintance as much or more than the death of someone closer to me. For me, I think "misplacing" the grief makes it safer. The woman who wrote the article had experienced a lot of loss in her life so maybe feeling deeply the death of someone she did not actually know very well allowed her to feel the sadness that she would not allow herself to feel at the other deaths.

In a related way, sometimes allowing myself to feel sadness or grief over someone not particularly close to me opens up floodgates of emotion and I feel like I'm feeling all the sadness in the world at once. The sadness is real, even if the immediate cause of it is not apparent.
Interesting and insightful. That also brings some perspective into something I've wondered about - the strong reactions over the death of Princess Diana, even though she had broken from the royal family.
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Old 03-17-2018, 08:11 AM
 
Location: In the house we finally own!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Interesting and insightful. That also brings some perspective into something I've wondered about - the strong reactions over the death of Princess Diana, even though she had broken from the royal family.
When Princess Diana died, I fell apart. I didn't know her, never met her, and was not obsessed with her. Even so, my grief was deep and overwhelming. I couldn't stop crying. I felt that the world was robbed of someone that was an icon of beauty, grace, purity of heart and I grieved for her not being there to raise her sons and shape the men they would become, one of them a future king.

I knew this was not normal but it didn't stop the feelings or the crying. So I went to see the psychotherapist that had helped me through a rather horrible divorce and helped me to become my own person for the first time in my life. Part of what I learned is stated above. More importantly I learned that the overwhelming grief was not just for Diana's untimely and tragic death.

There was already a huge amount of sadness inside me that I was never able to let out to fully deal with. It was a mixture of loss, regret, guilt, fear, broken dreams and memories that had built up over the years that I could no longer hold back. Diana's death broke open the floodgates and allowed me to finally feel these things and process them out in the open. Basically it was the emotional trigger that I needed to break free of so much I had held inside.

Perhaps in some way this is what happened with the woman in the article. Her grief is real, but it is not only for the death of her friend.
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