When someone who has been important to us dies, we are often left with a confusion of feelings and emotions. This guide has been developed by a group of secondary school students to help young people find a way through those feelings .
Feeling ConfusedconfusionFeeling SadnesssadnessFeeling like your are forgetting?forgettingFeeling AngerangerFeeling GuiltguiltFeeling LonelinesslonelinessFeeling HurthurtFeeling Strongerstronger


Why do I feel so angry?
Anyone can feel angry when they lose someone special – it seems so unfair. You might feel angry at the person who has died, at people you are closest to, yourself or doctors. Try to find ways of expressing your anger without hurting yourself or others.


What’s happening?
A death changes lots of things and this makes people feel a bit confused. Maybe you can’t believe this has happened. You may not know what to do, or how you should feel. Your may have lots of questions. Take it slowly, ask for explanations, and tell other how they can help.


What if I forget?
Don’t worry, memories are always there. Keep things that remind you of the person. Looking at photos and having something you can hold and feel helps you remember. Moving on is not about forgetting, it’s about learning to live with what’s happened and how your life has changed.


Was it my fault?
Try not to blame yourself. It’s natural to ask yourself questions like why or what if. Remind yourself not just of what you wish you had said or done, but of what you did say or do that was positive. It is important that we learn to forgive ourselves and others.


Why does it hurt?
Grief is painful. The pain can be physical: your body may ache and you might feel ill and really tired. It can also be emotional with painful thoughts and feelings which sometimes can be overwhelming. Grief does this, don’t be scared. The pain will become easier to cope with in time.


Who can I talk to?
Grief can make you feel very lonely: even when you’re with others there can be a big gap. Think about different people who can help. Choose someone you trust to share your thoughts with. It may not be easy, but try not to isolate yourself.


To cry or not to cry?
It is okay to cry – it can help you feel better. If you don’t cry, or can’t, that’s okay too – everyone’s different and some people just cry inside. It’s also okay to have fun. It doesn’t mean you are ‘over it’, you don’t care or you have forgotten.


Do I have to be stronger?
No. Grief sometimes makes us feel weak and vulnerable and that’s alright. There will be times you feel okay, but “I’m fine” is often one of the biggest lies we tell! Be honest about how you really feel, both to yourself and others.
Produced by Perth and Kinross Schools Bereavement Project based on ideas developed by local secondary school students. Other sources of support for young people experiencing bereavement include: www.crusescotland.org.uk www.hopeagain.org.uk www.childbereavementuk.org www.littlewebsite.org