Q. My husband died about five months ago and I think I should be feeling better by now, but honestly, I feel worse. Is there something wrong with me?

A.

I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your husband. In the process of grief, five months is really not a long time, although many people who are grieving expect to feel better sooner and cannot understand why they are still struggling with such intense feelings. Most people who are grieving express that they have some good days along with difficult days. Be gentle with yourself as you experience these normal feelings that are a part of grief.

It is important to remember that the grieving process does take time and cannot be rushed. Although it may feel very upsetting, it is normal to have emotional ups and downs. You are experiencing your world without the physical and emotional presence of your loved one and planning for your own future.

I suggest seeking out supportive services to help you better understand the process of grief and to connect to others who understand what you are feeling. You may benefit from individual counseling, participating in a support group, or reading more about grief and what to expect.

To learn more about coping with grief, please see our fact sheets, Living with Grief: How Can You Help Yourself and Coping with the Loss of Your Partner or Spouse

I also recommend the book, How to Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies, by Therese Rando (Bantam Publishers).

Remember, it is a normal and positive step to reach out for help and support during your grief.