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Grief and Relief Are Both Legitimate Emotions After Loved One's Death

DadWomanCreditjoyce-huis-292442-unsplash (2)..Upon Dad’s physical death, I felt his spiritual presence with me in a way that had eluded me during those ten years of dementia. The shell that had trapped him for a decade was buried. I sobbed as they lowered his flagged draped casket while taps rang out from the bugle of an aging Korean War veteran. Still, I felt relief. Relief that his suffering - and ours -  was over...Heads nod and often tears flow. Many people feel ashamed to admit to even an inkling of relief. One brave friend told me she had to fake sadness at her mother’s funeral. Oh, she was truly sad to lose that last remnant of her mother, but she’d been sadder before, as she watches cancer ravage her mother’s frail body. She knew her mother was ready to go. So, while sad to bury her mother, my friend was relieved that her beloved mother’s suffering was over.

Read more on HealthCentral about mixed emotions after a loved one's death:

Support a caregiver or jump-start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders of Minding Our Elders e-mail Carol  

Photo credit: Credit Joyce-huis-292442-unsplash

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