Coping with grief

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By Rose Jessica Octaviano

A Sound Mind

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

I BELIEVE that the people who come into our lives come for a reason, for a season, or for a lifetime.

We meet a lot of people as we journey through life. Some stay, some go. And when they leave, sometimes we are not ready for the loss. This loss could be a breakup, a divorce, an annulment or a death of a loved one (a family member, a friend, a spouse or a boyfriend/girlfriend).

It is hard to let go. It hurts a lot. We cry. We grieve. We want to die. We go through the different stages of grieving before we can truly heal.


According to Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and David Kessler, there are five stages of grieving: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

It takes time but eventually we will reach the "acceptance stage," where we have accepted the reality that someone we love has left us.

We move on, we forgive our loved one for leaving us and we also need to forgive ourselves for not being a better partner/child/sibling/friend or not doing something more to save the relationship.

We have accepted the loss, we forgave and we healed. We will be at peace with ourselves. Life is again beautiful.

Although, these five stages are said to true in grieving for a death, some people (including myself) believe that these stages are also true for those who lost a loved one through a separation, divorce or a break up.

Breaking up is hard. Losing a friend, a sibling or parent is painful. But these events don't have to break us. We can survive the loss by passing through the process.

Some people get stuck in the "depression" stage. During a break up, one's self-esteem goes down to the lowest level. They become so extremely sad that sometimes one feels that life is not worth living anymore.

If you feel this way, please contact the Philippine Mental Health Association (PMHA) Bacolod-Negros Occidental Chapter at 433-8868 or email at or this writer at We'll be glad to help you.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 30, 2014.


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