What Are The Stages Of Grief

Bargaining Grief

Grief is a complicated emotion and just as torturous. Grief comes in different forms and in various stages in our lives. Letting go of grief is one of the most challenging things that you can ever do. It is painful and draining.  Grief will not only drain you emotionally, but also physically. That emptiness that keeps growing in your heart will break you from within and restrict all your rational thinking.  Can you imagine the pain of waking up each morning and having to deal with the loss of something or someone that you thought was forever?  It is very similar to losing your home. For me, particularly, all my experiences came from losing people who were extremely close to me. People who promised forever and yet left.  No one really anticipates the departure of the people who meant life to them, and yet they have to face it. Like a bullet in their chest, they carry the pain every day; they bleed every day till it stops hurting anymore. But does that mean that hurt is gone?  Does time really heal anything, or do we just grow used to it? I guess only time can answer the question. But till then, all we are left with is the hurt, the pain, and the grief.  Out of all, grief is the most twisted and damaging thing a human can feel after the loss of someone who was extremely close to them.  Are you confused about why?  Have you been wondering if you have experienced grief ever? Well, then, stay with us, and we shall find out about the bargaining grief and all the other stages of grief that one experiences and everything else that is related to such a complicated and tortuous emotion.  What Is Grief? In simple terms, the experience that one has while coping with the loss of something they loved or was close to them is grief. A lot of us may associate grief with the painful time period that one goes through while dealing with the death of a loved one.  But that is not always the case.  Grief comes with any event that challenges or disrupts the sense of normalcy within ourselves. This also includes the loss of connections that may define us.  You may associate grief with the loss of: A friend, family member, partner, or pet. Your home, neighborhood, or community. A marriage, friendship, or another form of kinship. Financial stability. A dream or goal. Fertility. Your job or career. Good health. Your youth. Grief may also arise in the weirdest forms as one grieves for their own their own life as they prepare for death. For example, in cases where people are diagnosed with terminal illnesses like cancer or lung diseases, they grieve over the thought that they could not achieve all the things that they had to and have to bid goodbye to their lives.  Now that we have discussed what grief actually is, it is the right time to discuss what is known as bargaining grief. Well, precisely, bargaining grief is one of the five stages of grief and occurs additionally with other strong emotions like anger or denial.  Read more: Is It Ok If Capricorn And Gemini To Date? What Is Bargaining Grief? The bargaining grief or bargaining stage of grief is the third stage of grief as per the Five Stages of Grief model by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.  According to this model, bargaining grief is a stage where an individual generally tries to negotiate with themselves, with others, or anyone literally. Sounds maddening, right? It is.  When you lose someone who was extremely close to you, you literally want to do everything you possibly can to bring them back. This desperation goes to a point where you lose control of your senses.  For instance, how many times have you sat there and wondered that maybe you could have prevented the breakup only if you had acted differently? Perhaps you should not have said that or done something differently; maybe then, they would not have left.  But is it really the case?  Could it really have stopped them from leaving? Or is it just our grief convincing us?  You are not the only one feeling this way. I did, too. A lot of us do. Some people even go to the extent of bargaining with God in hopes that maybe the superior being could give us what meant to us the most.  “In the bargaining stage of grief, people tend to negotiate or make deals as a strategy to manage their pain,” Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD, professor at Yeshiva University and a clinical psychologist, says.  What Are The Stages Of Grief? Grief is mainly divided into five stages. Bargaining grief is the third stage of grief.  Here is a list of the five stages of grief according to the Five Stages of Grief model by Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.  Denial: This is the stage where you cannot accept the truth of the loss. You refuse to believe that the loss is real. You tend to believe that they are coming back. You feel that one fine day, they might just wake up from sleep and realize what a grave mistake they made, and they will come back running to you, and you will once again melt in their warmth.  Anger: After denial comes anger. You will tend to direct your anger towards multiple sources, including God himself. If you are grieving over the death of someone close, you will blame God for taking their life away. If you are grieving for the love that left you, you will be angry at yourself for doing things that made them leave, or people around that could not make them stay. At times, your anger will not be for anyone in particular. You will find yourself being angry for no reason at all. That is normal. Do not be scared if that happens. You have not grown an angry issue. You are just grieving.  Bargaining: This is a very complicated stage of grief. This is the time when you try to negotiate and reach an agreement with anyone so that you do not have to deal with the loss. The agreement means even negotiating with God. Bargaining also comes with regrets of your own actions that you think might have caused them to leave, and maybe if you had done things differently, they would be here today.  Depression: This is the most popular of the emotions that humans face. You may experience depression with a storm of complex emotions, which mainly includes emotional detachment.  Acceptance: After fighting the entire battle, you finally start to accept the truth. This is very liberating, and emotions may get confusing. While you feel happy that you have finally moved on, there will be times when you will break down. You will have an unbearable pain in your chest and feel everything crumbling down. This is normal. You are a human being, after all. Acceptance doesn’t mean healing. You may accept it, but it takes time to heal. The fight never really gets over till you have fully healed from the scars.  However, you must remember that this is only a theoretical model. There is no mandate that one has to experience grief while following these five stages. Human emotions function in a unique way for each individual. Therefore, experiencing grief will also differ from one human to the other.  You may like to read: Is It Ok For A Taurus And Capricorn To Date? Characteristic Of Bargaining Grief Stage If case you are wondering how it feels to experience bargaining grief, here are some of the characteristics that are associated with this stage:  Feeling extremely ashamed or guilty of your actions or thoughts.  Feeling insecure, scared, or anxious.  Contemplating on what could have been.  Charging yourself responsible for the situations.  Constantly punishing yourself.  Overthinking and worrying about things.  Judging yourself and every other person that crosses your path.  Comparing your circumstances to others.  Trying out future predictions and assuming the worst-case scenarios.  Praying and wishing for different scenarios.  Saying or thinking, “What if…” or “If I do this then…” or “If only I had…”  Examples Of Bargaining Grief Here are some examples of the thoughts that might cross one’s mind while they are going through a bargaining grief stage, as per Dr. Romanoff.  Offering to become a better person, helping others, or making donations to manage or deal with the pain of loss.  Trying to negotiate with your fate, a higher power, the Gods above, or even the universe.  Praying and manifesting miracles to negate the loss.  Bargaining about what happened in the past and thinking that the loss would not have happened if you did things differently. For example, you may feel, “If I stopped by his neighborhood that night, he would still be here,” or “I lost hope in the relationship too easily. If I had tried a little more, we would still be married.”  When Does Bargaining Grief Become A Problem? Bargaining is a very normal and anticipated part of grief. However, it becomes a problem only when it gets out of control. Just like every other feeling, it is also normal as long as it is controlled.  Losing control over bargaining grief may lead to excessive rumination, obsessive thinking, and every other feeling that leads to terrible distress.  If you are experiencing a feeling that is hard to deal with in your everyday life and is not only getting hard to cope with but also interfering with your everyday functions, you are possibly experiencing what is known in psychological terms as prolonged grief disorder or complicated grief.  Complicated grief is the prolonged pain and mourning that prohibits you from moving on in your life and healing properly after dealing with a loss. The prolonged grief disorder is associated with sorrow and rumination that gets so intense that it becomes impossible for you to focus on anything else. About 7% of the total bereaved people deal with prolonged grief disorder.  Read more: Is It OK If Pisces And Cancer Are A Good Couple? Coping Mechanisms Of Bargaining Grief Coping mechanisms come in various forms and types. While some people go cold and emotionless as a way to cope with their emotions, others get extremely emotional. These emotions are all valid, and one must never feel guilty about going through any of these emotions.  Letting go of someone is never easy. Losing a part of you that you thought was yours forever can damage you from within. Waking up every morning and realizing that they don’t feel the same way as you can shatter your heart.  I know it all because I have been there too. I have spent those nights crying and cursing myself for not being good enough for someone who left because they were incapable of dealing with emotions. It took me forever to realize that I was never at fault. I never did anything so bad that I would just get up one morning and leave. That is ridiculous. For almost ten months, I sat there, blaming myself that maybe I was at fault. I made stupid deals with God. I would approach people and talk to them, hoping that maybe they could help me bring him back. But none of it can ever work out like that.  They left because they had to. It was their choice. It was a decision that they made for themselves. And after months of staying angry and getting mad at myself, I finally accepted it.  While you may wonder why I am talking about a broken relationship while discussing grief, I mean, why not? Isn’t it the death of a relationship, after all?  As per Tricia Wolanin, Psy.D, and a clinical psychologist, “The process of dealing with a breakup is comparable to grief. It’s the death of a relationship, hopes, and dreams for the future. The person we are losing was [a big part of] our world and therefore has taken up so much of our mental and heart space.” Af for me, I felt one of the best ways to deal with grief in general is to feel it all. Most of us have a habit of running away from our feelings in hopes that they cannot hurt us anymore.  That is not healthy.  One of the best ways to get over a feeling is to feel it all. The more you feel it, the easier it will become for you to accept it. When you accept that you are in pain, that you are grieving, you will eventually seek help. You will slowly start questioning why you are feeling this way.  You will question the invasive thoughts in your brain and their relevance. And once you have done it all and cried it all out, what will welcome you is - Acceptance.  The Bottom Line The loss of someone is irreplaceable. It is a void that no one can ever take. Losing something that was dear to you will forever shatter a part of you that can never be fixed.  Griefing for that loss is normal. Never feel guilty for what you are feeling. From denial to bargaining grief to depression, there are all the emotions that make you a human being.  Therefore, stop running away from them. Accept them the way they are, seek help, and in no time, acceptance will seek you too.  Thank you for staying with us for this long. I am hoping you found the answers you were looking for. If there is anything else you need to ask, please feel free to drop a comment below! Read Also: Is It Ok To Be In Love With A Married Man? Is It Ok To Go For A Sexual Orientation Test? Is It OK To Fall Out Of Love? And What To Do Next?