Trans4mind Home Page
~ Making the Human Heart Visible ~

Looking for a better life?

Our online, interactive video workshops present the most effective methods of personal development, combined with personal support from expert life coaches.

Explore Article Library

Ways To Cope With Bereavement

By Gene Torrey

Most traumas, including the death of a spouse are potentially shattering experiences. These events can disrupt the survivor's social, emotional, and cognitive worlds. Although there has been frequent mention in the literature that traumatic situations cause people to talk about their experiences most evidence has been anecdotal. When someone within a social network dies, members of the network are naturally drawn together. During the grieving period especially within the first few days or weeks the survivors socially share their emotions and memories with each other.

Many of the discussion topics surround the individual who died, of course, but funerals and grieving rituals often include the social sharing of other personal and family histories. Although researched conducted to date has not found compelling evidence that social sharing leads to emotional recovery, our data suggested that it may serve several other important cognitive, psychological, and social functions.

Analysis and Recommendations for Steps to Handle The Loss of a Spouse in the First Year. The roles we have within our social networks are not often discussed or clearly defined. One of the ironies of having a spouse die is that we openly discuss the person, our feelings about him or her, and become conscious of that person's influence on us. As far as it applies to bereavement, the death of a loved one generally introduces chaos in people's personal universe, which may end up in denial and in alteration of the sense of reality. When bereaved individuals socially share the loss of a loved one, the contribution helps to give both the death itself and its consequences more reality.

A widow has to go through a lot when her spouse dies especially when she is very young. The death of spouse very often challenges our beliefs of a coherent, predictable, and controllable world. The overwhelming emotions which result from such challenges often drive individuals into a state of cognitive business. They slip into a cycle of ruminative thinking trying unsuccessfully to figure it all out. Based on research, it is hypothesized that social sharing helps to undermine this cognitive business cycle. This leads to predict that emotional memories that were not shared would be associated with higher cognitive needs than emotional memories that were shared. This function of social sharing is also very relevant in the context of bereavement.

Experiencing the death of a spouse, often shatters people's basic beliefs that they live in an orderly, understandable, and meaningful world. As a result, individuals frequently search for some meaning or try to make sense out of their negative experiences. Finding meaning in the loss of spouse is thought to be one way for dealing with and adjusting to the event. Through the use of social sharing, people can contribute to give both the death itself and its consequences more sense and meaning. ----------------------------


Stroebe, W., Stroebe, M., Schut, H., Zech, E., & van den Bout, J. (1997, June). Must we give sorrow words? Paper presented at the Third International Conference on Grief and Bereavement in Contemporary Society, Washington, DC.

Watson, D., & Pennebaker, J. W. (1989). Health complaints, stress, and distress: Exploring the central role of negative affectivity. Psychological Review, 2, 234-254.

Wortman, C. B., & Silver, R. C. (1989). The myths of coping with loss. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 57, 349-357.

About The Author

Gene Torrey - runs a non profit grief and bereavement website (Linda Angel Bereavement & Grief Help Center) at who's sole aim is to provide free information to those in need. The website provides articles, resources, advise, forums & a free book.


Careers & Employment
Grief & Loss
Kids & Teens
Public Speaking
Self Help
Self Improvement & Motivation
Sexual Relations
Stress Management
Travel and Leisure

From our extensive site, you'll find good info on many topics using this search:

A great way to support your Trans4mind Training is to use these popular and effective hypnosis downloads...

  • The Next Level ~ Designed to radically boost your performance in any field. It's based on a technique used by top athletes and other successful people to help them make a big stride forward.
  • Create Your Own Reality ~ Use the power of your unconscious mind to transform your life.
  • Deeper Self Respect ~ Use hypnosis to connect with your true inner worth.
  • Detach From Fear ~ Tune out nervousness and anxiety with hypnosis.
  • Generalized Anxiety Treatment ~ Use hypnosis as a generalized anxiety disorder treatment and you can feel calm today.
  • Improving Concentration and Focus ~ Learn how to discipline, direct and command your mind to improve your performance.
  • Exercise Motivation ~ Give you powerful keys to getting back on track with your exercise - and staying there.
  • Overcoming Shyness ~ Provides an invisible security blanket allowing you to develop social ease and overcome shyness.
  • Quick Confidence Booster ~ An audio hypnosis session that's specifically designed to get you (quickly!) back on track.
  • Stop Negative Thoughts ~ Learn powerful hypnotic techniques to stop negative thoughts before they start.
  • Overcoming Procrastination ~ Let hypnosis help you get on with what you need to do, when you need to do it. Let nothing hold you back.
  • Think Thin ~ Use hypnosis to re-train your brain and lose weight naturally... that's how to get and stay slim.
  • Fall Asleep Fast ~ Relearn how to fall asleep fast and enjoy a good night's sleep.
Search on an issue that interests or concerns you...

Trans4mind Training is the best thing we've ever done! It's a series of interactive video workshops covering the key challenges we all face in life - to help you achieve greater inner peace and true fulfillment.
Copyright © 1997-2016 Trans4mind Ltd