Trevor Hayley


Funeral and Life Memorial Celebrant

A Caring Presence for you and your family so you can Celebrate a Life

Servicing Greater Adelaide, Fleurieu, South Coast and Adelaide Hills Regions of South Australia



Complicated Grief

Grief is, because love is #5

Just as the word suggests, there is nothing simple about complicated grief. Overwhelming sadness, and feelings of being stuck when it comes to loss, over an extended period of time, are symptoms where extra help may be needed.

A parent losing a child, either from illness and accident, or suicide. There is no answer to the ‘why’ question, nor any words that can help. The new widow, who after 50 years of living in the same house, not only faces the death of a life partner, but may be ailing themselves, and circumstances lead to a move into care. There are three losses there, not just one.

I can’t even imagine what people are going through in Syria. There is so much loss, on so many levels; I fear for life after the war, if in fact it ever stops. What about school shootings, the Port Arthur massacre, or disasters that take life, when they were only there yesterday?

One grief journey is enough to deal with. When one loss builds on another, and then another, and then another, it can become crippling. Happiness, if we allow ourselves to feel, without feeling guilty, become elusive, almost unattainable.

There are no words. And if you find yourself listening to someone’s story, there are no words. Such conversations are uncomfortable, but for the person sharing, life is unbearable. But if someone does open up to you, what an amazing privilege we have; trust has blossomed. In those moments listen without judgement, be fully present, and if there is silence for a time, that is OK. Gently, gently, always.

This commentary in this blog is intended to be general in nature. It is just some observations from one fellow traveller in life to another. If anything in this blog raises issues for you, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or consult with a trusted medical professional.



Trevor Hayley
Servicing Greater Adelaide and Regional South Australia

Phone: 0409 107 372


ABN 73 737 609 724

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