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The Tragedy of Estrangement After a Loss


Grieving Process

Posted On: Mar 01, 2017

The Tragedy of Estrangement After a Loss

Sometimes, a family goes through an estrangement after suffering a loss. This makes the death of the shared family member that much worse. In a very real way, all parties involved then have to deal with another loss, albeit an altogether different one. There are many reasons for this to happen, all of them unfortunate. Understanding why it happens may be able to help you avoid it. After all, family needs to come together and support each other following the death of someone all of you loved. This is a time for people to get closer, not distance themselves from each other.

Death Makes Emotions Run High

Estrangement can occur if there were any hard feelings or dramatic occurrences surrounding the death. This is, unfortunately, common. Death can bring out the worst in people just as easily and readily as it can bring out the best. If there are issues, try to resolve them. Point out to your family members that tomorrow isn't a guarantee. It's always better to make up, especially with family. Something could happen to any of you, at any time. There's no sense being estranged. Seek closure together. Bury the hatchet.

Families Come Untethered

Almost every family has an anchor or two, a force that keeps everyone together, in contact, and in good standing. The loss of that anchor leaves the rest of the family floating. Without anyone to tether you to each other, it's much easier to go your separate ways. It's not that there's any animosity or resentment, but more than you've lost the one thing you all had in common.

Family Matters More

Family matters more than distance, petty issues, or even significant problems. If you can come together, you need to do so. If there's a way around the cause of the estrangement, find the path—or forge one, if it comes to that. The point is that your family is your family. Blood is blood. After a loss, there's no rhyme or reason for you to drift as if you're strangers.

Of course, if you need to cut ties with certain family members, that's absolutely your prerogative. However, if the estrangement is unwanted or unwilling, fight for your family. Do what you can to keep everyone close—even if that means you're the new anchor.