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how to survive valentines day grief

Special days, such as birthdays, anniversaries and holidays, often trigger powerful emotions and memories in survivors regardless of how much time has passed since the death of a loved one. A “holiday reaction” or “anniversary response” can occur because we associate a date on the calendar and/or the event itself with someone significant, such as a spouse, family member or friend.

For anyone mourning a loss to death, Valentine’s Day can feel particularly cruel because it emphasizes the togetherness, love, romance, possibilities, future, etc., between two people.

Moreover, given its significant marketing everywhere these days, as well as merchandise prominently displayed in stores of all types, it is practically impossible to avoid reminders that the “couple’s holiday” approaches.

This article offers tips to help you cope with the grief you feel on or around Valentine’s Day as you attempt to deal with an already broken heart.

If you are comfortable with the idea, select a significant memento, reminder or artifact that you strongly associate with the deceased and, literally, bury it in the ground during a private ceremony that you plan. Whether this involves a particular photograph, letter, matchbook, souvenir or some other physical connection to your loved one, the idea here is to symbolically and lovingly say goodbye to the deceased and to “let go” of your past relationship so you can move forward