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When Your Loved One Doesn't Say What You Want to Hear


Lifestyle Improvement

Posted On: Feb 23, 2017

When Your Loved One Doesn't Say What You Want to Hear

In pop culture, especially TV shows, books, and movies, poignant or painful deaths are dramatized and sweetened. There's almost always a scene where the dying person reveals a secret, makes an announcement, or provides some kind of closure to the grieving survivors surrounding her or him. We've become conditioned to that, so much so that many of us expect it, especially when we've rarely if ever dealt with death before. As a result, it's all too easy to be disappointed when a loved one passes before telling us or giving us something we want. It's unfortunate, and it truly is disappointing, but there are only so many things you can do.

Find Closure for Yourself

What were you expecting your loved one to say? In the absence of a stunning revelation meant to bring you closure, you may have to go looking for it yourself. That's not fair, and it probably hurts deeply, but once the person is gone, there's nothing else you can do. Think about the questions that have no answers. Can you go searching for answers yourself? If you were waiting for your loved one to validate you in some way or to make amends for past wrongs, understand that as long as you find closure in those things, that's all that matters.

Look for Peace within—and with Other Survivors

You're the only hope for peace that you have now. Your loved one did not offer absolution or clarity. If you can find peace within yourself, then it's time to call forth all your resources. If you feel like you can't find it yourself, reach out to other relatives and friends who were close to your loved one. Talk to them. Discuss your plight.

Move On

This isn't something that it's usually advisable to say to the bereaved. It's impossible, and it's an unreasonable demand. However, if your loved one didn't say what you expected, what you wanted, or what you needed to hear, there's little you can do. Dwelling on it will only eat you up inside.

You might need to talk to a counselor or visit a grief group to find closure. A professional can help you get over certain feelings, and there's no shame in that.