What are the stages of grief? or the well known as the 5 stages of grief?
Here a little bit of story before explaining them.
The Kübler-Ross model postulates a series of emotional stages experienced by survivors of an intimate’s death, wherein the five stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.
The model was first introduced by Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying, and was inspired by her work with terminally ill patients. Motivated by the lack of curriculum in medical schools on the subject of death and dying, Kübler-Ross examined death and those faced with it at the University of Chicago medical school. Kübler-Ross’ project evolved into a series of seminars which, along with patient interviews and previous research, became the foundation for her book. Since the publication of “On Death and Dying”, the Kübler-Ross model has become accepted by the general public; however, its validity is not consistently supported by the majority of research.
Kübler-Ross noted later in life that the stages are not a linear and predictable progression and that she regretted writing them in a way that was misunderstood. Rather, these are a collation of five common experiences for the bereaved that can occur in any order, if at all.
So, the 5 stages are (Also known as DABDA):
- Denial — The first reaction is denial. In this stage individuals believe the diagnosis is somehow mistaken, and cling to a false, preferable reality. In this stage you don’t realize what is happening is actually real, here is when you say thins like “This is NOT happening” and you truly believe it.
- Anger — When the individual recognizes that denial cannot continue, they become frustrated, especially at proximate individuals. Certain psychological responses of a person undergoing this phase would be: “Why me? It’s not fair!”; “How can this happen to me?”; ‘”Who is to blame?”; “Why would this happen?”.
- Bargaining — The third stage involves the hope that the individual can avoid a cause of grief. Usually, the negotiation for an extended life is made in exchange for a reformed lifestyle. People facing less serious trauma can bargain or seek compromise.
- Depression — “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?”; “I’m going to die soon, so what’s the point?”; “I miss my loved one, why go on?”
During the fourth stage, the individual becomes saddened by the mathematical probability of death. In this state, the individual may become silent, refuse visitors and spend much of the time mournful and sullen.
- Acceptance — “It’s going to be okay.”; “I can’t fight it, I may as well prepare for it.”
In this last stage, individuals embrace mortality or inevitable future, or that of a loved one, or other tragic event. People dying may precede the survivors in this state, which typically comes with a calm, retrospective view for the individual, and a stable condition of emotions.
It is important to note here that these stages do not necessarily occur in that order, you can actually start in a really depressed stage and then move over, get to the acceptance and months later step backwards, etc.
If you look at the Biografield logo, you will see the representation for every single stage, additionally to that all the tributes comes with a GriefMeter that help you flag how do you feel in regards to you loss.
How much times does it take to cover all the stages? Read our post about this and more helping information here.
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