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How can I get through the death of my loved one?

Survivors of those who died suddenly in accidents are forced to deal with a jumble of emotions as they struggle to cope with the loss of their loved ones. The process is not always straightforward and can be complicated by many factors.

Survivors sometimes can focus their attention on a criminal trial, as in cases where someone is charged with driving under the influence and someone is killed. Attending the trial and offering testimony can expiate some of the survivors' feelings and move them along in the grieving process.

But the facts of a case are not always so clear, and often there will be no criminal prosecution at all. It's important for survivors to realize that just because no one is able to be prosecuted for a family member's death, that does not bar the door to civil justice through the Florida courts. Holding an individual or company responsible for a loved one's death can be an important step for survivors to take as they struggle with their loss.

Below are some other techniques to employ to help work through the tragedy.

It can be therapeutic for survivors to re-establish control of their lives after experiencing loss. Maintaining a simple daily routine, even when grief threatens to overwhelm, can help set the tone for the new normal.

When children are involved, adding structure can reassure them that they have some control over their own lives.

Getting plenty of rest, making time for exercise and eating healthful foods are all positive steps to take for those who are left to grieve. Try not to give in to binge behavior, whether the substance is drugs, alcohol or too much food. Masking the pain by dulling the mind and the body only prolongs the grieving process without ever resolving it.

Turn to what sustains, comforts and recharges. Think back to past life episodes that were challenging and rely on the techniques and strengths that helped you remain strong in the face of adversity.

Let friends and family know how they can best support you in the days, weeks and months after the passing of your loved one. Realize that holidays and anniversaries will be toughest, and have plans in place to help you with the most difficult moments.

Source: journeyofhearts.org, "Dealing with Sudden, Accidental or Traumatic Death," accessed Oct. 09, 2015

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