Our Helpline is considered by some to be a lifeline and isn’t limited to offering medical advice. Many people approach us in the wake of a bereavement, in search of solace and help, both practical and spiritual. We thought it would be beneficial to gather our disparate pieces of advice dispensed over the years in one place, to form a trove and reference guide. This article is therefore a composite piece reflecting wide-ranging experiences. And finally, to emphasise, we are always here for you no matter what.

This article is a brief guide to coping with grief, providing useful signposts to the many organisations and charities that can help you through this life-changing experience.

Grief is felt uniquely, and it may be experienced differently depending upon the nature of your bereavement and the way in which you've lost the person. Everyone has their own coping mechanism. It is important to recognise this. There is no universal panacea.


Research suggests there are 7 stages of grief. While you may not experience all of these, here they are:

  • shock and disbelief.
  • denial.
  • guilt.
  • anger and bargaining.
  • depression, loneliness and reflection.
  • reconstruction (or 'working through')
  • acceptance.


Unfortunately, there is much administration in the wake of a death. This can feel overwhelming and you will probably need help from friends and family to complete the many forms and numerous tasks. There are two very helpful websites to guide you: 




Helpful support

Many of your friends and family will naturally rally around with offers of moral support. Don't feel afraid or too proud to accept. Sometimes, people seek professional support, and the websites below are very helpful ports of call:

Samaritans call 116 123 
Cruse helpline 0808 808 1677 
Child Bereavement UK 0800 02 888 40
Mind 0300 123 3393
Widowed & Young 0300 201 0051

Meanwhile our supporters have offered their own tips and tactics:

Supporter comments
“Family, friends and faith got me through it” (MM)

"A friend once said to me that you don’t have to feel guilty about your emotions and feelings (grief/anxiety/stupidity/anger/etc) and that you are allowed to ‘wallow’ in these feelings. But only for a short time. So give in to these feelings for them to let go of you. I say accept support from friends and family and professionals. They are the ladder you use to climb out of the pit" (MS)

"I found this image was helpful when talking to those dealing with grief (especially in the early stages as a preparation tool)" (GT)   

Marfan Trust, a CIO registered as a charity in England in Wales with charity number 1198847 at: c/o 24 Oakfield Lane, Keston, Kent, BR2 6BY. Contact us at [email protected] or by phone on + 44 (0)333 011 5256
Log in | Powered by White Fuse