Grief is a natural response to loss of any kind, whether it’s the death of a loved one or the loss of a job or friendship. Rather than suppressing our emotions during the grieving process, being able to grieve properly with support is the best way to move through the different emotions. The Prophet (pbuh) allowed himself to experience various emotions as part of grieving over his loved ones, such as during the loss of his wife, Khadija (RA), his uncle Abu Talib (RA), and his young children. If grief is not properly experienced, it can spiral into more severe mental health issues. In this toolkit, we provide resources for understanding the grieving process, coping with different kinds of loss, and how to provide age-specific support to children and young adults.
This toolkit was developed by Mariam Kandil, M.A., Mariam Rahseed, and edited by Madiha Tahseen, PhD
Grief is a complicated process, unique for each individual and for each kind of loss. There are no right or wrong ways to grieve. Read this resource to understand the stages of grief, myths about grieving, and symptoms of grieving.
Use our faith to help you through the grieving process:
- • Feeling great sadness does not mean one is questioning Allah’s will. Even the Prophet (pbuh) cried after loss and went through the various stages of grief.
- • Listen to the “Death of Loved One” short video by Dr. Omar Suleiman
- • Understand the process of death from a Islamic perspective and what happens afterwards in this video series “For Those Left Behind” by Dr. Omar Suleiman
- • Eid and special occasions can trigger a fresh wave of grief after the passing of a loved one. Learn how you can move through the grief when it shows up.
“Losing someone or something you love or care deeply about is very painful. You may experience all kinds of difficult emotions and it may feel like the pain and sadness you’re experiencing will never let up. These are normal reactions to a significant loss. But while there is no right or wrong way to grieve, there are healthy ways to cope with the pain that, in time, can renew you and permit you to move on.”
- • Acknowledge and accept what you are feeling. The best way to overcome your grief is to go right through it. Learn how to ground yourself and be more mindful
- • Pay attention to spiritual bypassing, when religion and faith is used to shut down emotions, like “You just need to pray more…”
- • Start taking steps to fill the void inside of you left by your loved one. Healthy coping is essential to overcoming your grief.
- • Alternate between “loss-related” activities (e.g., looking at photos of the deceased, crying, talking about the person) and “restorative” activities (e.g., making plans for the future, spending time on hobbies)
- • Exercise. Your level of activity can have a significant impact on your mental health