Chapter 2: Factors that may affect your grief

How you learned of the death

I found out that she had died in a staff meeting. My boss announced it in a very cold way, saying, “One of our colleagues died today. I don’t really have a lot of details. There are counsellors here for those who need them.”

There were a lot of rumours about how he died. I found out later that it was a suicide.

The way that you find out about a death can have a significant impact on your grief. You may receive little information or too much. The person who informs you may do so in a way that seems insensitive, uncaring, or judgmental; or you might learn of the death through social or other media. You might be alone when you find out, with co-workers or friends, or in a public place.

Depending on the circumstances and your relationship with your co-worker, your thoughts and feelings might be very intense at first, or you might feel numb. It may take you some time to absorb what has happened, and your thoughts and feelings may change as time passes.