Grieving in isolation was already a trending topic due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, but since the tragedy in Nova Scotia it’s becoming part of a wider conversation. Not only are these families dealing with personal grief, but the entire community, province and country.
Under normal circumstances, there would be in-person candlelight vigils, the Prime Minister and other officials would fly there to show support for the community and funerals would include crowds of mourners, but these are strange times.
While Nova Scotia is navigating this difficult situation, it’s a good time to share some tips on grieving in isolation.
Tips for Grieving in Isolation
- Pick up the phone – Call your loved ones and do your best to comfort one another in whatever way works for you. This could mean sharing stories, talking through the details or simply expressing your sorrow. These calls can be short or long – whatever helps.
- Arrange a video chat – If you want to talk to a bunch of family members at the same time, schedule a video chat using Zoom, Facebook, Google Hangouts, Skype or Facetime. This can be a good way to socially gather without physically gathering.
- Send a card – For loved ones looking to support friends or family, mail a sympathy card to show that you’re there for them during this difficult time. In return, those grieving in isolation can mail thank you cards to friends and family who supported them during this difficult time.
- Plan a funeral or memorial in the future – For some, it helps to keep busy. For some this could mean going forward with planning a celebration of life, even if that means it will be delayed. Funeral homes are doing some planning, just without concrete dates for the service. You can pre-arrange for a time when you can safely gather.
- Make an online slideshow – Scan photos of the deceased and put together a slideshow that you can share online. Send the link around so that others can view it.
- Get online or phone grief counselling – While tradition in-person grief counselling sessions won’t be possible right now, many local organizations are offering video or phone services. If you call, for example, the Bereaved Families of Ontario – York Region, a volunteer counselor will arrange to talk with you by phone. There are other online services, such as apps, that you can try if you need to talk to someone.
If you are struggling during this difficult situation, feel free to reach out to us at Chapel Ridge Funeral Home and Cremation Centre and we can refer you to some local services in York Region to help you.
We also want to express our sincere condolences to the people of Nova Scotia who are trying to come to terms with the horrible tragedy that has rocked their communities far and wide.