When the Holidays Hurt

19 Ways to Ease the Pain

By: Victor Parachin

  1. Have a family discussion about holidays.
  2. Lower expectations.
  3. Shop smart.
  4. Express and explore your faith.
  5. Don’t buy into holiday myths.
  6. Do something symbolic.
  7. Don’t try to do everything yourself.
  8. Concentrate on the meaning of the holiday.
  9. Find a unique way to remember your loved one.
  10. Ask for what you need from others.
  11. Reach out to help others.
  12. Read for encouragement.
  13. Be patient with yourself.
  14. Cry but then stop.
  15. Let your limits be known.
  16. Stay connected.
  17. Remember, it is ok to feel joy at the holidays.
  18. Seek and speak with a spiritual leader.
  19. Finally, keep in mind that most grievers report that their anxious anticipation of the holiday was harder than the actual event.

Victor Parachin is a member of NFDA’s Seminary Resource Program and a grief recovery facilitator in Claremont, CA.