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When the person you are caring for has died, you may feel very shocked, however well you have prepared yourself. Don’t feel that you have to do anything. You can just stay with your relative or friend for a while. You may feel confused and bewildered, and have many different emotions.
The death of someone close to you is a very significant event in a person’s life. Most cultures and religions have developed rituals or processes to mark this event and to help the people left behind to adjust to the change.
During the first few hours, the loss of your loved one may seem very unreal, and there are some actions which you need to take. However, it’s important that you don’t feel rushed to ‘get on with things’. If you want, you can just spend some quiet time with the person who has died. Many people like to sit and talk or hold hands, and see their loved one at peace, especially if the last few hours or days were a strain. In many religions, this is a time when there is much that the people who have been left behind need to do to help their relative or friend to pass onwards. It is important to follow your instincts, and do what you feel is appropriate.
Content last reviewed: 1 September 2011
Next planned review: 2013
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