I do not know when grief became a competition, but I am really tired of hearing people comparing their grief to another person’s.
Grief is not a game.
There are no winners. Only losers.
We are all grieving because we have already lost. We lost a person, a place, a relationship, a future, etc.
We lost. The moment our grief began, we lost.
And why would anyone want to win the “who is grieving more?” game, anyway?
It hurts me to see people engaged in arguments over who has it worse. Or which type of loss is worse. And they will go on long-winded, exhausting rants about why they are suffering more.
Grief is not a game.
Every person reacts to loss differently. And everyone is entitled to feel their own loss as deeply and painfully as it presents itself.
There is no right amount of grief. There is no wrong amount of grief.
There is simply grief. And loss.
And when I am in the throes of grieving the death of my husband, I find it immensely inappropriate for people to try to one-up my loss.
I am sorry that you had to slowly watch your loved one die. I am sorry that your father’s death affected you so immensely. I am sorry that your divorce ripped you to shreds over and over again.
Your grief is not worse than mine. My grief is not worse than yours. Our grief is not the same.
Grief is as individual as snowflakes and fingerprints.
If I were to marry again and that person were to die, that grief would be different. It wouldn’t be better. It wouldn’t be worse. It would be different.
All grief comes with its own challenges. All grief comes with its own reprieves.
There is no ranking system. There are no points involved.
It is plain. And simple.
Grief is NOT a game.
Please, the next time you feel like you need to tell someone that your situation is worse, stop. Think about what you are about to say. Consider the fact that when you tell someone that their grief is less than yours, you are telling them that their feelings are invalid. You are telling them that they are wrong for responding the way that they are.
Think about what it would feel like if someone told that to you.
And then either walk away from the conversation or tell the person that you are sorry for what they are going through. Tell them that you wish that you weren’t both walking through grief.
Offer support. Or offer nothing.
Do not compare.
Do not compete.
You’ve already lost.
We all have.
Grief. Is. Not. A. Game.