Grieving complicated or difficult relationships

So, what do we do if the relationship we had with the one who is gone was not all we hoped or dreamed it might be? If there was abuse, or estrangement, or a divorce? Why do we still grieve those complicated or difficult relationships? In these situations, we often face two griefs. One is for the relationship we lost when they died or left. The other is for the relationship we so wish we could have had, for the reconciliation that can never now come, for the healing of the brokenness. We grieve the unfinished business of building healthy relationships and good memories. It is perfectly okay to grieve those lost relationships. It is also okay not to grieve them. There may still be so much anger, hurt, resentment that we cannot, in the moment, grieve the loss of this person. Recognize that this grief may come later, and that too will be okay. If this blog series offers you anything, let it be that your grief is your own. You are not being graded on how you grieve. And if you are being graded, it is the grader, not you who has failed! No one can tell you how you feel or should feel, especially in regard to complicated or difficult relationships. Find the ways of grieving that will bring you peace.

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