Good Grief! Eliminating Bad Consequences


When my husband died, I was faced with a future as a single mother of two young boys. I rebelled by remarrying too soon, and not wisely. I was thinking about how much I enjoyed my first marriage and that I wanted that again. I thought that my chances of having that again were slim at the ripe old age of 36. Instead of waiting until I had experienced any sort of healing from my grief, I plunged into a relationship before I really knew the man. I had a swollen ego from earning a higher education and never thought I could be so stupid. But I have learned over time that intelligence and matters of grief have very little to do with one another.

Fortunately, the marriage only lasted three years and I was able to receive good counseling shortly thereafter. I learned so much about myself. By being so shut down to my true feelings, I left myself open to one of the worst experiences of my life. I don't blame the was my inability to be real with myself that created the whole mess. Unfortunately my sons suffered the most by being exposed to a very unhealthy home life. Counseling helped them as well.

Here's what I’ve learned, many years later. Grief can have insidious consequences when not acknowledged. I was so focused on my fears of the future, worrying about living without someone to take care of my boys, on alleviating my loneliness, that I had exposed my family to a dangerously unbalanced individual. I was seduced by the promises and possibilities of a life with a companion. My radar for disaster was completely turned off. Those gut feelings or intuitive places we all have, had checked out. I was simply making bad decisions.

Now that I have learned about grief and know that the only way out of it is through it, I can look back and forgive myself for not knowing better at the time. I still am working on the guilt that I exposed my sons to such a sick environment, but I trust that this will pass, too. Had I allowed myself to feel my grieving emotions and been able to express them in healthy ways, our lives would have been vastly different.

The lesson for people to take from this is, when experiencing grief, be open to the possibility that outside help is a good idea. When one is in deep grief, it can be almost impossible to have good insight into judging how one is doing when making day to day decisions. Good counsel by a trusted therapist or pastor can make all the difference and I highly recommend it. It could literally save your life. At the very least, it could save you from making severely bad choices that lead down a worse path.

Related Topics: Advice

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