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Community Care Hospice Logo

Community Care Hospice

1669 Rombach Ave.
Wilmington, OH 45177
Phone: 937.382.5400
Fax: 937.383.3898

Ohio's Community Mercy Hospice Logo

Ohio's Community Mercy Hospice

Mitchell-Thomas Center
100 W. McCreight Ave., Ste. 400
Springfield, OH 45504
937.390.9665

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes Logo

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes

Chapel Hill
12200 Strausser St. NW
Canal Fulton, OH 44614
330.264.4899

Ohio's Hospice Logo

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes

200 Timberline Dr. #1212
Marietta, OH 45750
740.629.9990

Ohio's Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties

Ohio's Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties

5940 Long Meadow Dr.
Middletown, OH 45005
513.422.0300

Ohio's Hospice of Dayton Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Dayton

324 Wilmington Ave.
Dayton, Ohio 45420
937.256.4490
1.800.653.4490

Ohio's Hospice of Central Ohio

Newark

2269 Cherry Valley Rd.
Newark, OH 43055
740.788.1400

Inpatient Care Center

1320 West Main St.
Newark, OH 43055
740.344.0379

Ohio's Hospice of Central Ohio at
The Ohio State University
Wexner Medical Center

410 W 10th Ave - 7th Floor
Columbus, OH 43210
614.685.0001

Ohio's Hospice of Fayette County Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Fayette County

222 N. Oakland Ave.
Washington Court House, OH 43160
740.335.0149

Ohio's Hospice of Miami County Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Miami County

550 Summit Ave., Ste. 101
Troy, OH 45373
937.335.5191

Ohio's Hospice LifeCare Logo

Ohio's Hospice LifeCare

1900 Akron Rd.
Wooster, OH 44691
330.264.4899

Ohio's Hospice Loving Care Logo

Ohio's Hospice Loving Care

779 London Ave.
Marysville, OH 43040
937.644.1928

Grieving The Loss Of A Loved One On Valentine’s Day

Grieving the Loss of a Loved One on Valentine’s Day

On Valentine’s Day, we celebrate the notion of love and the relationships we have with those who are significant in our lives. For those who are grieving the loss of a loved one, Valentine’s Day can be especially difficult and an emotional day. The bereavement counseling professionals at the Ohio’s Hospice Pathways of Hope Grief Counseling Centers explain the emotions behind the holiday and tips on how to care for yourself during this time. 

David Hargrave, bereavement counseling professional at Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare, explains that holidays can be particularly emotional due to secondary losses. “Secondary losses are a result of a primary death or loss,” Hargrave said. “There is a loss of shared traditions, companionship and future plans that we would have shared with our partners.”  

Because of these secondary losses, those who are grieving often find holidays like Valentine’s Day to be overwhelming. Hargrave recommends going easy on yourself. “Remember you are going through a physically and emotionally stressful time,” he said. “If you want Valentine’s Day to be the same as it always was, you are in for disappointment and frustration. With time and healing, you can create and experience new and pleasant memories.” 

Grief can make you feel pressure and fatigue during the holiday. Hargrave notes that it is OK to feel sad on a holiday that is filled with idealistic expectations of happiness and joy.  

In contrast, it is OK to feel good during the holiday. “Give yourself permission to feel good, to laugh, and even to have fun. To feel good and laugh at times during your grief is a normal and healthy reaction,” Hargrave said. “You are in no way being disrespectful to the memory of your loved one if you enjoy yourself at times.” 

Michelle Kessler, bereavement coordinator at Community Care Hospice and Ohio’s Hospice of Fayette County, encourages those who have lost a partner to try reframing the way they think about Valentine’s Day.  

“The focus of Valentine’s Day is normally on romantic love,” Kessler said. “Try thinking about the holiday as sending love to family, friends and yourself. Everyone needs to feel loved.” 

Kessler recommends practicing self-care through any activities you find relaxing, such as a massage or listening to music. If you are looking to Scatter Kindness with others on Valentine’s Day, some ideas include baking treats for friends and family, sending cards to loved ones, and offering one random act of kindness to a stranger.  

Deb Holt, bereavement counseling professional at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton, shares that those who are grieving are typically just catching their breath from the rush of the holidays in November and December. “Red hearts with cupid bows, boxes of candy, commercials with couples, and flower bouquets once again takes our breath away,” Holt said. 

Valentine’s Day often brings back memories of cards, dinners and expressions of love with your loved one. While you may want to ignore this particularly difficult holiday, Holt suggests choosing to focus on what the day means – celebrating, giving and receiving love of all kinds.  

Volunteering, offering kindness to others, and telling loved ones how much they mean to you are some ways to share love with others in your life. Holt also recommends caring for yourself. “Treat yourself to an at-home spa day, a large chocolate sundae, or binge-watching a TV series,” she said. “Do whatever makes you smile.” 

Susan Good, bereavement counseling professional at Ohio’s Community Mercy Hospice, a service of Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton, discusses how there will always be hard days during the grief journey. “Sadness will be your traveling partner for a long time,” Good said. “But you can be your greatest cheerleader as you look at how far you have come.”  

For additional grief support, Pathways of Hope℠ services are available to the friends and family of all Ohio’s Hospice patients, as well as anyone in the communities Ohio’s Hospice serves. For more information, please visit: https://www.ohioshospice.org/pathwaysofhope/    

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