Grief is a multilayered response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone who has died. Although conventionally focused on the emotional response to loss, it also has physical, cognitive, behavioral, social, and philosophical dimensions. While the terms are often used interchangeably, bereavement refers to the state of loss, and grief is the reaction to loss.

The grief associated with death is familiar to all funeral professionals, but it must be noted that individuals grieve for a variety reasons, such as unemployment, ill health or the end of a relationship.


This video gives brief insight into the way people deal with grief:

0:05 Seven stages of grief

  • Body reactions
  • Depression and panic
  • Guilt
  • Anger
  • Idealisation
  • Realisation
  • Acceptance


0:30 Anger

  • Anger at self
  • Anger at person who has passed away


0:40 Guilt

  • Feeling responsible for person’s death
  • Dwelling on what we could have done to prevent death


1:02 Depression & Panic

  • Difficulty functioning in life (work, relationships)
  • Fatigue


1:30 Body reactions

  • Lack of sleep


1:54 How grief affects us

  • Lack of decision making ability


2:37 Children and grief

  • Adults may not understand the concept of death
  • Allow children time to move through grief


3:02 Funerals

  • Families may not communicate well when in the same room


3:29 What to do next