Anger and Grief: It’s Ok to Be Mad
When you’re grieving, it’s natural to feel angry. This isn’t something people talk about very often. In fact, it’s almost like anger being part of the grieving process is some sort of well-kept secret. But it’s true. And it’s ok if you feel angry amid grief.
Anger is a normal, human emotion that we all experience. In fact, anger is often a secondary emotion that crops up when there’s another painful emotion. So, in that context, it actually makes sense that grief and anger might go together. After all, when you’re grieving, you’re already experiencing a range of intense emotions. And many of those emotions don’t feel very good. So, it’s no surprise that anger might be one of those emotions that bubble up.
There is a Wide Range of Things You Might Feel Angry About
Grief and anger often go together because they’re both natural reactions to loss. When you lose something or someone that you care about, you may have thoughts like, “Why did this happen to me?” or “This isn’t fair.” One minute you might be angry you didn’t have a chance to say goodbye and the next grateful a loved one died quickly. You may feel angry that someone who didn’t know the person as well seems so upset. And then, ten minutes later you may feel angry at the world for seeming to move on while you still hurt so badly.
And all of these reaction are okay.
There is no “right” way to grieve. It’s complex. And feelings may change moment to moment…including your anger.
Your Anger is Valid
When grieving, it can be easy to feel guilty to have negative emotions, like anger. But, you need to remember that your anger is a valid emotion. Even in response to something as tragic as the death of a loved one, your anger is still a natural and normal reaction.
It may even be hard to feel anger. Especially if it’s directed toward the person you lost. But, it’s okay. It’s okay to be angry and it’s okay to feel angry at them. This doesn’t mean you didn’t love them. It doesn’t make you a bad person either. This only means that you’re grieving.
Acknowledge Your Anger
Being angry while grieving can sometimes make us feel like we’re out of control. Or, be can be misinterpreted by others as not being “sad enough.” But, you need to permit yourself to feel your anger. Recognizing and acknowledging your anger is an important part of the grieving process.
Sometimes, it can be a sign you’re not ready to let go. Or, you might need more time to process your feelings. Either way, it’s okay. Bottling up this emotion can be detrimental to your grieving process and also to your mental health. But, by acknowledging and accepting your anger, you’re one step closer to healing.
So, try to validate your feelings by acknowledging that they are there. Hold that anger as it is. See it. Allow it to be what it is in this moment. Knowing that the emotion of anger, as with so many other emotions that come and go through grief, may come and go. Yet, it is part of your experience at this particular moment.
Tips From a Grieving Counselor Near Cincinnati, OH to Help you Cope With Anger and Grief
Everyone grieves in different ways. This means that each person deals with the various emotions related to grief differently. This is why there’s no “right” way to grieve. And, there’s also no timeline for grieving. You might find that your anger comes and goes. Or, you might feel angry all the time. Finding a way to express your anger in a healthy way can help you to cope with your grief.
Writing in a Journal
You may be surprised at how therapeutic it can be to simply get your feelings out on paper. Writing your feelings out on paper in a controlled and safe environment can help you to process your emotions. Doing so can also help to provide some clarity.
Screaming into a Pillow
This may seem silly, but sometimes all you need is to let out a good, long scream. This can help to release some of the pent-up anger and frustration you might be feeling. It releases the tension in your muscles along with creating endorphins (happy hormones) that can help improve your mood.
Exercising may be the last thing on your mind after a loss. But, sometimes staying active and moving your body can help you to work through some of those negative emotions. It doesn’t have to be anything too intense. It can be a walk in the park, some light yoga, or even just stretching. By exercising, you are releasing endorphins in your body and it can help ease some of your anger.
Talking to a Grief Counselor or Therapist
Of course, there is talking to a grief counselor or therapist. This is a great option if you’re finding it difficult to cope with your anger on your own. A grief counselor can help you understand and work through your emotions in a way that is healthy for you and your grieving process. Finding a therapist or counselor who specializes in grief counseling can also be beneficial. They will have a better understanding of what you’re going through.
Anger is a natural and normal reaction to loss. And, it’s okay to feel angry. Remember, acknowledging and accepting your anger is an important part of the grieving process. There are also healthy ways to express and cope with your anger. And if you are struggling, there are specialized grieving counselors who are here to support you and navigate this difficult time.
A grief counselor in Cincinnati, OH can help you find healthy ways to accept and express your emotions from the comfort of home. Together, you can sift through complicated feelings, honor the memory of the person you lost, and find your way forward in your new normal.
Begin Grief Counseling in Cincinnati, OH
Being angry is a part of grieving and everyone grieves differently. You don’t have to navigate your grief and anger alone. As a grief counselor serving Kentucky and Ohio, I have worked with many individuals through complex grief and anger so they can start satisfying, meaningful lives.
My office in Erlanger, KY is only minutes from Cncinnati, OH. If you live anywhere in the Cincinnati area and are experiencing grief-related thoughts, behaviors, or feelings that are distressing, or you feel stuck in your loss, please contact me. We can get started with counseling sessions available online in Kentucky and Ohio. Follow the steps below to get started:
- Use the contact form to get connected.
- Start sessions with a compassionate online grief counselor.
- Learn to fully accept the loss and the new relationship with your loved one.
Other Mental Health Services at Kyle Linnemann Counseling
As a grief counselor, I understand grief can be overwhelming and come with many other difficult emotions. This is why I provide a few different services at my Erlanger, KY-based therapy practice. This includes ACT therapy, anxiety therapy, anger management therapy, and individual therapy. I also offer treatment for depression. Currently, my practice provides online therapy sessions and Humana therapy coverage to residents of Kentucky and Ohio. For more information about my practice, check out the blog, read the FAQs, and learn more about me. I am here to help you navigate this difficult time in your life. Reach out today to honor your grief and start living again.