Managing the Anxiety of Losing Someone: Practical Tips and Support
Losing a loved one or someone close to you might be a challenging experience. It's heartbreaking and may bring on intense anxiety that may feel overwhelming. There is no right or wrong way to process the loss of a person you care about; however, there may be some practical tips and sources of support that may be helpful when navigating such an emotional hurdle.
Understanding The Stages Of Grief And Finding Healthy Ways To Cope
It's common to experience a range of emotions when grieving the loss of someone you care about. These emotions may include shock, denial, anger, guilt, and sadness. Some people may experience all these emotions, while others may only experience a few. It's ideal to note that there is no right or wrong way to grieve, and everyone's experience will be unique. Some people may find it helpful to understand the stages of grief as a way to make sense of their emotions and recognize that they are not alone in their experience.
The Stages Of Grief, As Described By Psychiatrist Elizabeth Kübler-Ross, Include:
It may be a way of coping with the shock of the loss.
Anger: It's common to feel angry when you're grieving. This is likely a natural response to loss. You might feel angry with the person who died, yourself, or the world.
Bargaining: You might think about what you could have done differently or what you would give to have your loved one back. This is a way of trying to regain control and make sense of what's happened.
Depression: It's common to feel overwhelmed by sadness when grieving. You might feel empty, hopeless, and disconnected from others. This is a normal response to loss.
Acceptance: In this stage, you begin to accept the reality of your loss. You may still feel sad and miss the person, but you may start to move forward with your life.
Tips For Coping With The Intensity Of Emotions
Grieving the loss of someone you care about might be incredibly difficult, and it's normal to feel overwhelmed by the intensity of your emotions.
Here Are Some Tips For Coping:
Allow yourself to feel your emotions: It's ideal to allow yourself to feel the full range of emotions that come with grief. Holding back your emotions might be exhausting and even prolong the grieving process.
Take breaks: It's okay to take breaks from your grief and give yourself time to rest and recharge. Try to engage in activities that bring you joy, such as hobbies or spending time with loved ones, which may help you find some respite from your grief.
Find healthy ways to cope: There may be many healthy ways to cope with the intensity of your emotions. Some people find it helpful to write in a journal, engage in creative activities, or exercise.
Take time to process and grieve: It is perhaps a good deal to allow yourself time to process and mourn the loss of your loved one. This may mean taking time off work, reducing your commitments, or finding ways to care for yourself. It's okay to take things slow and give yourself the time you need to heal. Grief tends to be a personal process, and you may have a better outcome if you allow yourself the time to work through your emotions. Seeking support from friends, loved ones, or mental health professionals might also be helpful in the grieving process. It's okay to have good and bad days; grieving tends to be a rollercoaster of emotions, and it may be normal to have ups and downs. Try to be patient with yourself; grief is a process that may take time, and it's normal to feel like you're not making progress. Try to remember It's okay to laugh and find happiness, even after experiencing a significant loss. It doesn't mean you've forgotten about the person you've lost, but rather that you may be finding a way to move forward with your life.
The Benefits Of Online Therapy For Managing Grief And Loss
When grieving the loss of someone you care about, it may be challenging to find the energy or motivation to leave your home. Online therapy allows you to receive support from the comfort of your home, which may be especially helpful when you struggle to find the energy to engage in activities outside your home. Another benefit of online therapy is the availability of therapists with specialized training in grief and loss. By seeking online therapy, you might find a therapist with experience and training in helping people cope with grief and loss. Grieving the loss of a loved one might be a complex and challenging process, and it may be helpful to work with a therapist who understands the unique challenges you're facing.
Sometimes, the fear of abandonment is realized, and your loved one passes away, leaves, or is taken away. Although learning to deal with the fear itself is important, you may at some point have to cope with your worst fear being realized. How you grieve will likely depend on the circumstances surrounding your loss and other factors, but many of the symptoms of grief will be the same. When you’ve lost a loved one, there are some healthy ways to cope.
- Let Yourself Grieve. If you lose a loved one, regardless of circumstances, it is healthy to allow yourself to grieve. It may be tempting to try to leap into a new relationship or find a quick replacement for your loss, but this is likely to do more damage than good. Grieving is usually not a linear process; you’re not likely to grieve for a few days, weeks, or months, then move on. Instead, grief can ebb and flow, and appear without warning months or even years down the road — and that is okay. Give yourself the space and grace to grieve.
- Take Some Time. If you’ve lost a loved one to death, abandonment, or any other source, give yourself time to slow down and rest. While you may not be able to take time off work, school, or your responsibilities for as long as you’d like, carve out time to care for yourself, turn to your support system, and do anything else that is most effective and healthy for you. Losing someone can be emotionally exhausting, sure, but it can also take a lot out of you mentally and physically, so you might need to take additional time to rest.
- Allow Yourself To Feel. You’re most likely going to feel a lot of emotion. You could feel despair and pain one minute, and overwhelming nervousness or anger the next. That’s okay; shifts in mood are frequently part of the grieving and loss processes. You might also encounter intense feelings of guilt when you experience moments of joy or happiness amid your pain, but this is also a rather typical experience, and it is okay to feel happiness. Allow yourself to experience a wide spectrum of emotions without pressure. You can heal, with time, effort, and space, even though the process may be long, arduous, and uncomfortable.
Love And Loss
So, how to deal with losing someone you love, or the fear of losing love? Understanding what caused the fear or contributed to it often helps. Childhood trauma, previous losses, and abuse can all explain these fears. Abandonment could’ve taken place in a romantic relationship, too. Professional help is often an incredible tool for people with a fear of loss, as therapy can more effectively and carefully help identify childhood trauma, emotional damages and needs, and the roots of your fear.
Effectiveness Of Online Therapy
Online therapy may be an effective treatment option for individuals experiencing grief and loss due to the loss of a loved one to suicide. A study published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry found that an internet-based cognitive-behavioral therapy program effectively reduced symptoms of prolonged grief disorder (PGD). The study found large between-group effect sizes for improving PGD symptoms, with results remaining stable over time. These findings suggest that online therapy may be an appropriate alternative to face-to-face grief interventions for individuals suffering from PGD symptoms after bereavement.
"Grief is a process that takes time; try to be patient with yourself, and remember it's okay to laugh and find happiness, even after experiencing a significant loss."
Losing someone close to you may be one of the most complex experiences a person might go through. While there's no right or wrong way to process your grief, some practical tips and sources of support may be helpful when navigating such an emotional hurdle. Online therapy has been shown to be an effective way to process grief and receive support from trained professionals. If you're struggling to cope with the loss of a loved one, consider reaching out for help from an online therapist.
A few commonly asked questions about this topic are found below:
What is the fear of losing someone called?
Why do I have fear of losing someone?
How do I get over my fear of losing someone?
What is the fear of losing the people you love?
Is it normal to be scared to lose a boyfriend?
More Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
- How do I stop worrying about losing someone?
Worrying about losing someone isn’t by any means uncommon, but it can impact your life. If the worry gets intense enough that it impacts your life or health, or if you find yourself heavily focused on it, consulting a therapist or counselor can help. Practices such as radical acceptance and focusing on the present moment can be advantageous ways to reframe your thoughts when worry steps in. It’s not to say that building your coping skills up will make the fear “go away” entirely, but it can help with grounding and preventing the fear from infringing on your mental or physical well-being, your interpersonal relationships, and other important parts of life.
- Is it bad to be afraid to lose someone?
It isn’t inherently bad to be afraid of losing loved ones, but it can be negative for your life in some ways. Most people are afraid of losing the people that they love, and it’s seen as a common fear. When it starts to hurt your life, though, whether that’s your relationships or something else, it is important to address it.
- How do you deal with the thought of losing someone or the fear of losing someone?
First, be proud of yourself for identifying that this is a fear for you. Acknowledging your fear head-on is often the first step to getting to where you want to be. Having a support system to talk to, particularly people who are compassionate and understanding, is often very helpful. Many people live with this fear, so you’re not alone. Having a safe space like therapy to talk it through and work on coping skills is important for a lot of people. It can also help to focus on the present moment. For example, if you fear losing a families, focus on being in the moment with them when you get to be or talking with them when you’re able. If you struggle to focus on what you want to focus on due to a condition like ADHD, an anxiety disorder, or OCD, a therapist may also be able to support you and can potentially help you find solutions or acceptance, depending on what is most applicable to your situation.
- What can I do when I hear about losing my child?
Fear of losing a child is another issue that can pop up for adults. Having a child is a very big deal in your life, and a lot of your identity is likely wrapped up in being a parent. Some parents wind up worrying so much about losing their children that it affects their all-around health. It’s understandable to have this fear, so be compassionate with yourself. As for what you can do: Seeing a mental health professional could be highly advantageous for a person in this situation.
- What are the signs of trust issues?
Another common reason why people are afraid of losing those whom they love is that they have developed trust issues. When you have trust issues, it can make you less likely to be trusting of others. Perhaps you’re worried about losing your loved one due to them not loving you any longer. You might be concerned about your partner cheating on you or simply getting bored and moving on. Trust issues can come about due to someone having bad experiences in the past. They can also happen when your partner gives you a reason to doubt them.
If your partner has been acting differently of late, then that might set your trust issues off. This could make it so that you are worried about losing loved ones more than usual. If you suspect that something is off with your partner, it can help to talk about it. Sometimes, people go through personal struggles due to being overworked or dealing with other types of stress in life. You don’t want to assume bad things about your partner before you have a conversation.
Avoid talking to your partner negatively and/or accusing them if you have nothing but suspicions based on changed behavior. Instead, bring the behavior up with them and ask what’s going on. Hopefully, you’ll be able to have an honest conversation. If communication does become a relationship problem for you, couples therapy may be advantageous.
Signs of trust issues could also involve people not being willing to open up. If you struggle to trust others, it can be tough and even nerve-racking to let them in.
- How do you know if a guy is afraid of losing you?
You can tell a guy is scared of losing you when he tries to keep you close. Some people can express an excessive amount of affection when they’re afraid of losing their significant others. They might start trying hard to get your attention. If these are things someone in your life faces, they may have difficulty trusting other people. That said, many things could make a man (or a person of any other gender) jealous or insecure in a relationship. It could relate to someone’s attachment style, past experiences, personal insecurities about themselves, or something else. It is possible to work through and cope with these concerns if it’s something you struggle with personally.
- How do you know when a guy is scared of losing you?
You can tell a guy is scared of losing you when he tries to keep you close. Some men can even be a little bit smothering with affection when they’re afraid of losing their significant others. They might start trying hard to get your attention. Typically, a man needs a reason to be afraid of losing loved ones before he would start acting differently. If your man sees someone flirting with you, then this could prompt him to act this way. Many things could make a man (or a person of any other gender) jealous or insecure in a relationship. It might be good to think about what you do on social media as well if you don’t want your partner to get the wrong idea.
It would be best for you to reassure you're significant other to make him feel less scared of losing you if indeed you care for him. You don’t want him to feel anger, anxiety, and other negative emotions because of your actions. Anger anxiety can be particularly troubling and you can avoid this by being a good partner. It might be good to know that your man cherishes you enough to feel afraid of losing you, but that doesn’t mean that you should want him to remain scared.
- Why do I worry about losing my girlfriend?
As mentioned earlier, worrying about losing someone isn’t entirely uncommon. When we talk about the fear of losing someone, it could mean fearing losing loved ones permanently due to death, or it could mean the fear of losing someone because they left you. Losing loved ones in the past could make it tough for you to avoid worrying about losing loved ones moving forward. For example, you might have lost a parent or close friend at a young age. It’s normal to feel worried about losing others when you have experienced love and loss already.
If this is something you face, there are steps you can take to address the worry. You can find a therapist that can help people to get through the pain of loss or the fear of it. Sometimes, in exploring the topic, one could find that a person is still grieving even after years of being separated from a loved one. When you’re grieving the loss of a loved one, it’s very easy to worry about losing loved ones again. Allow a trusted person in your life, such as a good therapist, to help you through this time in your life. When you’re grieving, it’s possible to find new ways to move forward.
Therapy Is Personal
Therapy is a personal experience, and not everyone will go into it seeking the same things. The independent, licensed providers on the BetterHelp platform have a range of specialties, which can make finding the fit you’re looking for easier.
If you’re still wondering if therapy is right for you, and how much therapy costs, please contact us at email@example.com. BetterHelp specializes in online therapy to help address all types of mental health concerns. If you’re interested in individual therapy, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and check out our Instagram. For more information about BetterHelp as a company, please find us on
If you need a crisis hotline or want to learn more about therapy, please see below:
- RAINN (Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network) – 1-800-656-4673
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – 1-800-273-8255
- National Domestic Violence Hotline – 1-800-799-7233
- NAMI Helpline (National Alliance on Mental Illness) – 1-800-950-6264
For more information on mental health, please see:
- SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) SAMHSA Facebook, SAMHSA Twitter, SAMHSA LinkedIn, SAMHSA Youtube
- Mental Health America, MHA Twitter, MHA Facebook, MHA Instagram, MHA Pinterest
- WebMD, WebMD Facebook, WebMD Twitter, WebMD Instagram, WebMD Pinterest
- NIMH (National Institute of Mental Health), NIMH Instagram, NIMH Facebook, NIMH Twitter,NIMH YouTube
- APA (American Psychiatric Association), APA Twitter, APA Facebook, APA LinkedIn, APA Instagram