Chapter 2: Understanding prolonged grief
What is prolonged grief?
I find it hard to focus. I’m on short-term disability because I don't feel safe to work. I don't want to be around anyone at work because I’m afraid I might emotionally fall apart.
I’m not an angry person, but I did feel alienated and angry with my parents. I think my anger came from not having a way to express my other emotions at that point.
Grieving the death of someone you care about can be difficult. Even though your grief may have felt complex or challenging at times, not all grief is complicated grief or prolonged grief.
Click on the arrows below to read about some aspects of prolonged grief:
Relates to the death of someone (does not occur after non-death losses like divorce, moving or job loss)
Loss occurred more than 12 months ago
Intense yearning or longing for the person who died
Preoccupation with the person who died
Bereavement lasts longer than expected (exceeds cultural/religious norms)
Causes distress or problems functioning in daily life
As time goes by, you may find that you are unable to engage fully with your life, or with existing or new relationships. If you continue to feel overwhelmed or stuck or in your grief, or if the person who died has become the primary focus of your life in a way that leaves little (if any) energy or interest for anything else, these can be indications of prolonged grief.