Life Goes On: Even After Loss
Dealing with death is one of the hardest things a teen has to do
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One of life’s biggest challenges is losing the people and things that you cherish and care for the most. Unfortunately, dealing with loss is inevitable, especially for teenagers. Dealing with this type of tragedy and loss can be a very difficult and seemingly impossible thing to do. In several South Shore towns including Abington, teens have lost some of the most important people in their lives between parents, friends, and classmates. At the time, it feels like the end of the world. It feels like nothing will ever get better or easier. But, as most of us in this town know, that is not true.
When we are young, most of us are not exposed to the harsh realities of the world we live in. We know nothing further than going to school every day, coming home to our families, and being with friends. When suddenly, someone who has helped shape the person you are, passes away, they take a part of you with them. It could be that you suddenly aren’t the strong person that you were before. Maybe you don’t have the tolerance for people and difficult situations that you might have had before. It is overwhelming, and more than anyone from the outside can understand. But the reality is that there are ways to cope and bring everything back to as close to normal as they can be.
If you are a young person who has dealt with several losses of loved ones, it is important to remember that there is a positive side to almost everything. Losing someone at an age so young can be thought of as “a chance for young people to learn about the joy and pain that comes from caring deeply for others,” said Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt in his article, “Helping Teenagers Cope With Grief.” (hospicenet.org). Dr. Wolfelt is the director of the Center for Loss and Life Transition in Colorado.
When a teenager is forced to deal with something such as the loss of a loved one, they are forced to grow up and make the transition from child to adult much quicker than they should. This certainly complicates things, but also can be viewed as something good. A way to handle going through this is to remember that being forced to mature more quickly will help you put things in life into perspective. You will no longer think that a little argument with someone, a bad day, even a bad week, is all that bad anymore. The things that are most important in life will be recognized and appreciated that much more, and that is something that only people who have been through a tragedy such as a loss of something precious to them can understand.
More importantly, you do not need to pretend you are okay. There are an unlimited amount of sources that you can go to if you need help coping with loss, and there is always someone there to help. Things will always get better.
-information and articles at www.hospicenet.org were consulted for this story.