Your feelings

There are many words people use to describe the emotions and physical symptoms they feel after the death of a relative or friend. You may have some or all of these feelings. You may have them at different times and in different ways. But you may not have any of them, and you may experience your grief differently.

Although these feelings can be very difficult and painful, they are all natural. No one can take away the pain you might feel, but there are things that may help.

The words on this page describe some of the feelings people told us they had had after the death of a relative or friend. These are words used by people on Macmillan’s Online Community. The size of each word shows how often it was used.

Bereavement word cloud
Bereavement word cloud

View a large version

Read a description of this image

Back to Coping with bereavement


Grief is a word for how we may feel after the death of someone close to us.

How grief can affect you

You may have many different emotional and physical symptoms after your relative or friend has died.

Starting to move on

While life will change, most people find that they begin to adjust as time passes.

Prolonged grief

If you continue to find life difficult after a bereavement, it is important to get help and support.