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How to Cope With Grief During the Holidays

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A Letter from Mark and Jim Busch

Dear friend,

Every year, we find ourselves counting down the days until the holiday season. While most of us normally view the season as merry and bright, you may not feel that way if you recently experienced a loss or know someone who has.

Our hearts are filled with so much love this time of year but at the same time, if you’re grieving, it’s easy and understandable to feel equal amounts of pain. Whether you recently lost a loved one, or the holidays simply remind you of someone who passed away years ago, there are plenty of ways you can overcome loss this season.

We invite any of our grieving friends to read the tips below to learn how you can cope with grief and loss during the holidays.

1. Continue the traditions you once shared together.

You most likely have many joyful memories of holiday traditions you and your loved one once shared together. It may seem painful to even think about going about those traditions now that they’re gone, but consider what they would want you to do.

Try introducing friends and family to this tradition, or go at it alone in order to keep it alive. Similarly, if someone close to you is also grieving, extend an invite for him or her to join in, as well.

Remembering the traditions and cheerful times you spent together can help you through the roller coaster of emotions.

2. Attend a remembrance event.

Another way to cope with grief during the holidays is to bond with others who are going through the same issues. Although we all grieve in different ways, it’s easy to find support with others who feel similarly at a remembrance event.

If you’re located near us in Northeast Ohio, consider a remembrance event like Blue Christmas Service at Hillcrest Community Church in Highland Heights. Attend the service with other grieving families on December 22 at 7:30 p.m.

Taking some quiet time to experience the emotions with others can help you through the process and create connections with those who understand the uphill journey you’re battling.

3. Make new memories with loved ones.

The holidays are the perfect time to celebrate those long-lived traditions. It’s also a great time to make new memories, even if you’re grieving.

If you’ve experienced a loss, now is the time to gather up friends and families and create new memories. Or, consider how valuable your memories are when you share them with others, and introduce your friends and family to traditions you once celebrated.

Also, if you know someone who is grieving, let him or her know that you’re there. A phone call or a sincere invitation for a warm cup of coffee can go a long way.

4. Devote time to your grief.

Grieving can happen anywhere at any time. Of course, it would be ideal if we could control our emotions for alone time, but grief can hit at work, at the grocery store or as we get ready for bed.

Although we can’t decide when we will feel this rush of emotions, devoting some time to your lost loved one during the holidays can help you through the journey. Try designating a time and place for remembrance. Think about the places you and your loved one used to visit and take some quiet time in that area to allow yourself to feel the emotions you must let out. And, remember to reflect on this as a positive experience, rather than feeling you must avoid the grief.

To learn more about how Busch Funeral Homes can help you through your grieving process visit our grief support page.


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