Stages of the Mourning Process
48 hrs. - 2 wks * Shock and Numbness
- Resists input (trying to find shelter).
- Judgment - difficulty making decisions, concentration limited.
- Functioning impeded ("zombie/robot").
- Emotional outbursts.
- Stunned feelings.
2 wks - 4 months * Searching and Yearning
- Very sensitive to stimuli.
- Anger and/or feelings of guilt.
- Feeling restless or impatient.
- Feeling uncertain.
- Testing what is real.
4 months - 7 months * Disorientation
- Weight loss or gain of more than 10 pounds.
- Aware of reality:
- Very aware of reality
- Time of turning to a physician.
- Psychosomatic dimension (colds, etc.).
- Temptation to see mourning as a disease.
- Low compliance with doctors' orders. Noncompliance with other expectations.
- Beware of trying to live as if nothing had happened.
- Beware of the urge to flee-strong sense of loss.
18 months - 24 months * Reorganization
- Sense of release (no longer obsessed by loss).
- Renewed energy.
- Make judgments more easily.
- Stable sleeping and eating habits.
Behavior characteristics often overlap and survivors may find the process prolonged.
SOURCE: Sacramento County Victim/Witness Assistance Program