People can react in many different ways. Everyone is different and there is no right or wrong way to grieve. In the hours, days and weeks after a bereavement it’s quite normal and common to experience some of these different reactions.

What are ‘normal’ reactions to a bereavement?

Sadness – cry a lot and feel overwhelming sorrow.

Shock – feel dazed and have difficulty taking in what’s happening.

Numbness or show lack of emotions – feel unable to cry or put off strong emotions by keeping busy.

Helplessness – have difficulty coping and need lots of support.

Denial – feel disbelief like ‘it’s not really happening’.

Anger – want to blame someone or something.

Guilt – about things you did or didn’t do.

Relief – that your loved one isn’t suffering anymore.

Confusion – feel disorientated or forget things.

Anxiety – feel anxious and experience physical symptoms like dizziness and rapid heartbeat.

Fear – feel panicky and worry more.

Loneliness – feel low, lonely or empty sometimes.

Stress – find it harder to cope when things go wrong.