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CHAPTER 7


for you. Even a short walk around your sitting room every hour, or stretching your arms and legs, can be beneficial.


Talk – even if you need to go over and over what happened, this is part of grief and a way of managing. It’s also a healthy way of continuing the bond between you and the person who died. But if you find talking far too painful that’s OK too and others should not try to push you into opening up. Most importantly, don’t try to live up to other people’s expectations about what you should be saying, doing, or feeling. This is your grief and you’ll handle it your way.


What about loneliness?


A partner’s death can leave a hole in your life, but it is possible to lessen the loneliness. First, balance your grief with ‘living’. It’s normal to cry and to remember your partner


Moving forward -- my top ten suggestions


1. Keep your mind active -- read, do puzzles, watch TV quizzes


2. Relax -- have a nap when you need to, allow yourself to ‘switch off’, listen to calming music


3. Treat yourself – anything from a soothing foot bath to a favourite bar of chocolate


4. Allow yourself to cry, talk to your partner, remember shared experiences, write a letter to your partner, look at photos


5. Give yourself permission to stop grieving sometimes -- laugh at a funny programme without feeling guilty


6. Don’t be pressured into making important decisions -- you’ll know when the time feels right


7. If you want to, keep a small memento of your partner close by -- a ring, a photo, a hankie


8. Do something for you -- interests you shared with your partner can bring back painful memories


9. If you want to, mark significant anniversaries -- light a candle, visit a special place, have a favourite meal. You could invite close friends or family to share these times, or be on your own if you prefer


10. You don’t have to do it alone. GP counsellors and Cruse Bereavement Care (www.cruse.org.uk) all offer additional support if you are feeling overwhelmed by your grief and loneliness


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