Surviving The Holidays When You’ve Lost A Loved One

December 18, 2015 by Miller Funeral & Cremation Services Staff  


The songs, movies, and traditions of the holidays can remind us of special moments and memories shared. However, if you have recently lost a loved one, this time of year can be particularly difficult.

When everyone else seems to be filled with joy and merriment, this time of grief can seem like an unfair burden. However, the important thing to remember is that you are not alone.

Many of us have faced a special occasion that brings to mind a departed friend, spouse, or other loved one. Although there is no magic wand to take away the feelings of loss, there are coping strategies you can use to navigate the holidays.


After You’ve Lost A Loved One: 5 Ways To Cope With The Holidays

It’s reasonable to feel sadder than usual when the celebratory season is at its height. For each of us, the grieving process takes different forms. Some find being among friends and family cathartic; others may choose a more introspective path.

Here are some ways people who are grieving have coped with the holidays:

  1. Create new memories with loved ones – Even though you have lost someone close, there are others who would welcome your love and attention. This could be anyone from a grandchild to a pet. By giving your time to others, you help bridge the sense of loss by sharing in the lives of those around you.
  2. Volunteer your time and talents – There are so many worthwhile causes to choose from, and most of them have a need for volunteers (especially during December). You could choose to answer the phones for a grief and loss support program or provide a helping hand to someone who is housebound.
  3. Use grief and loss support resources – From online grief support articles to in-person groups, being among those who understand what you’re feeling is tremendously comforting. It’s also a place where you can share your experience – uncensored – and receive much-needed validation of your feelings.
  4. Exercise to elevate your mood – Although the mornings are darker and the days colder, it’s important to get at least 20 minutes of exercise each day. Even a short walk can elevate your mood by releasing endorphins and other chemicals that prevent the blues from turning into depression.
  5. Honor your departed with a special tribute – One way to incorporate the memory of your loved one in the holidays is to come up with a tribute to celebrate his or her life. This could be something as personal as scattering ashes among a favorite stand of trees or as generous as a memorial gift to a charity. As long as it feels right to you, be as creative as you want.


People process grief in a variety of ways. While the holidays can seem especially rough, it’s helpful to renew your focus on the spirit of the season. You may find yourself making some wonderful memories with those closest to you or those who will appreciate your support.

From all of us at Miller Funeral and Cremation Services, we wish you a holiday season that brings peace of mind, warmth of spirit, and heartfelt connection.

Leave a Reply 0 comments

> More Comments

We appreciate your interest in this topic
In accordance with our policy, this
message has been declined.