Be it a cat, a puppy, a goldfish, or a turtle, having a pet will change your life. Whenever you go home, you will notice your pet’s presence at once. Puppies or cats can walk around your feet as if they are welcoming your arrival. On bad days, pets are also considered some of the best counselors there is.
Pets seem to understand what you’re going through, without judging you or your life in general. Pets appreciate you as you are, and in their eyes, you are the best person in the world.
You can’t seem to imagine living your life the same way without your fiercely loyal and endearing pet. When your beloved pet passes away, you’re at a loss. You don’t know how you will look at their toys or even their feeding bowl without tearing up. You feel empty because you consider your pet as a part of your family already. Thus, it is hard for many people to get over the loss of their pet easily.
If you have recently lost your pet, here are some proven ways you can get over your grief and start over again.
Give Yourself Time
Grieving is a process. “Everyone grieves differently; there is no right or wrong way and there is no schedule.” Ashley Curiel, PsyD explains. The length of grieving also varies from one person to another. You cannot tell when you are going to be okay. It entirely depends on your circumstances and how well you adapt to your situation.
You have to give yourself time to understand everything that happened over the past few weeks or months. Thus, it is perfectly understandable to feel shocked, angry, or confused. You may even question why this had to happen to you, of all people. If you need time to cry everything out for a day, do it. While grieving, you should be kind to yourself. Don’t rush to get well. Acknowledge every emotion.
Commemorate Your Pet’s Life
“Pets provide unconditional love and support, and are your companion day and night. The loss of this intense bond can be confusing and destabilizing.” Tony Rousmaniere, PsyD said. One of the critical stages of getting over your grief and accepting the loss of your pet is to commemorate your pet’s life. Remembering pets is a fitting closure to your pet’s death.
There are several ways you can achieve this goal. First, you can create an online blog dedicated to your pet. You can write about the good memories you have with your pet. In doing this, you are making your pet’s memories alive forever.
You can also hold a memorial service for your pet in your backyard. You can invite other family members and even give a short eulogy in memory of your pet. In addition, a little tombstone on top of your pet’s burial site is a nice touch as well. After this, you may feel that you have given your pet a dignified and well-deserved farewell.
Depression can numb any affected person. Some people with depression will want to stay indoors with the desire to rot away. If you are feeling this, combat it by going outdoors. Physical activity can work wonders on your mood. In addition, inhaling fresh air can also invigorate your senses. According to Andrea Bonior, PhD, clinical psychologist “Whether you suffer from seasonal affective disorder or not, the evidence is strong that getting outside just for a little bit can be very helpful.”
Seek Other People Who Also Lost Their Pets
People who lost their pets can also act as a support group. These pet owners also went through the same emotions as you. They could give you tips to help you get over your situation.
Go For Counseling
If you observe that you are beginning to engage in unhealthy coping mechanisms, another option you can go for is to go for counseling. You might be prescribed medication if you are having trouble sleeping or you are already harming yourself. You may also have to undergo talk therapy where you can process your negative emotions.
Losing a beloved pet can be life-shattering. You may feel that you sacrificed a part of yourself when your pet departed. However, there is still hope. While it is normal to grieve and feel deep sadness whenever you reminisce about your pet, you should keep in mind that things will get better in time. There are healthy coping mechanisms you can use during your grieving period. You can go out and engage in physical activities outdoors, seek the help of fellow pet owners, commemorate and immortalize your pet, and go for counseling. All these methods prove to be useful in getting over your grief after losing your pet