7 Stages Of Grief – Life After Loss

Going Through the Process and Back to Life


When you lose someone you love, it’s hard to imagine life without them. Every loss comes with pain and adjustments we need to make. You are not alone, and knowing the 7 stages of grief might help you see the light at the end of the tunnel.


It is important to interpret the stages loosely and expect much individual variation. There is no neat progression from one stage to the next. In reality, there is much looping back, or stages can hit at the same time, or occur out of order. So why bother with stage models at all? Because they are a good general guide of what to expect.

For example, generally, a long period of “depression” (not clinical depression), isolation, and loneliness happen late in the grief process, months after the tragedy strikes. It actually is normal and expected for you to be very depressed and sad eight months later.

Outsiders do not understand this and feel that it should be time for you to “get over it” and rejoin the land of the living. Just knowing that your desire to be alone with your sad reflections at this time is normal will help you deal with outside pressures. You are acting normally. They just don’t “get it”.

What Does Grief Feel Like?

Grief actually is different for each and every person. The seven stages of grief that we’ll dive into below is the perfect showcase of how people go through the grieving process. Coping with loss and dealing with all the emotions of grief is a trying time for anyone to deal with.

For many, there is quite an extensive mourning process that comes with the various stages for grief. This is why knowing grief symptoms can be a big indicator to someone about what stages of grief and loss their currently going through.

What Are The 7 Stages of Grief?

Here is the grief model we call the 7 Stages of Grief:

1. Shock & Denial

You will probably react to learning of the loss with numbed disbelief. You may deny the reality of the loss at some level, in order to avoid the pain. The shock provides emotional protection from being overwhelmed all at once. This may last for weeks.

This type of grief is probably one of the biggest and most important stages that people go through once they start processing through the stages of grief after suicide.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Mourning
  • Sadness
  • Confusion
  • Discomfort

2. Pain & Guilt

As the shock wears off, it is replaced with the suffering of unbelievable pain. Although excruciating and almost unbearable, it is important that you experience the pain fully, and not hide it, avoid it or escape from it with alcohol or drugs.

You may have guilty feelings or remorse over things you did or didn’t do with your loved one. Life feels chaotic and scary during this phase.

Out of all the stages of grief after an affair, this is the one that might be most prevalent because realization sets in that their choice was something that could have been prevented and stopped and that this suffering and pain were preventable.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Sadness
  • Guilt
  • Desperation
  • Betrayed

3. Anger & Bargaining

Frustration gives way to anger, and you may lash out and lay unwarranted blame for the death on someone else. Please try to control this, as permanent damage to your relationships may result. This is not a time for the release of bottled-up emotion. You may rail against fate, questioning “Why me?” You may also try to bargain in vain with the powers that be for a way out of your despair: “I will never drink again if you just bring him back”!

Depending on if you’re ready for grief counseling, this is a step that it might be a good choice to look into.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Anger
  • Resentment
  • Bargaining
  • Stubbornness

4. “Depression”, Reflection, Loneliness

Just when your friends may think you should be getting on with your life, a long period of sad reflection will likely overtake you. This is a normal stage of grief, so do not be “talked out of it” by well-meaning outsiders. Encouragement from others is not helpful to you during this stage of grieving.

During this time, you finally realize the true magnitude of your loss, and it depresses you. You may isolate yourself on purpose, reflect on things you did with your lost one, and focus on memories of the past. You may sense feelings of emptiness or despair.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Depression
  • Heavy
  • Crushed
  • Frustrated

5. The Upward Turn

As you start to adjust to life without your dear one, your life becomes a little calmer and more organized. Your physical symptoms lessen, and your “depression” begins to lift slightly.

This is the part of the grieving process that you’ll start to see the light a bit at the end of the tunnel. It’s a middle ground of all the grief symptoms that you’ll go through but it’s one that you can build upon.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Strengthened
  • Motivated
  • Awakened

6. Reconstruction & Working Through

As you become more functional, your mind starts working again, and you will find yourself seeking realistic solutions to problems posed by life without your loved one. You will start to work on practical and financial problems and reconstructing yourself and your life without him or her.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Inspired
  • Determined
  • Refreshed

7. Acceptance & Hope

During this, the last of the seven stages in this grief model, you learn to accept and deal with the reality of your situation. Acceptance does not necessarily mean instant happiness.

Given the pain and turmoil you have experienced, you can never return to the carefree, untroubled YOU that existed before this tragedy. But you will find a way forward. You will start to look forward and actually plan things for the future.

Eventually, you will be able to think about your lost loved one without pain. Sadness, yes! But the wrenching pain will be gone. You will once again anticipate some good times to come, and yes, even find joy again in the experience of living. You have made it through the 7 stages of grief.

Examples of emotions during this stage of grief:

  • Hopeful
  • Comforted
  • Relaxed
  • Secure

Stages of Grief After Death

Dealing with grief after death is one of the hardest emotions to try to understand and figure out. From the 7 stages of grief listed above, you’ll notice that depending on the death, you might actually start out at a varied stage of grief. (They don’t have to go in order).

Coping with grief after the death of a spouse is something that all married couples will need to prepare for and be ready to process. For many, the grief after losing their spouse will be almost too much to bear.

But if they’re ready to deal with grief after the loss of their spouse, the stages of grief and loss above can help.

Additional Resources you may want to consider ( Article Credit) :




Uncle Willard & Aunt Val Gean Wiese
We would like to thank you for linking us to the live streaming, so that we could see our Niece Cindy Ivin’s Memorial Service.  Please let her fellow workers know we thank them for their additional support along with her friends that helped her.  Cindy was very special to us. Uncle Willard & Aunt Val Gean Wiese North Dallas Funeral Home 972-241-9100 Don Dodd-Funeral Director