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What Is Bereavement?

…and how does it differ from depression?


What follows is a list of symptoms and emotions reported by both bereaved and depressed individuals. In some cases, the symptoms are described as mild, temporary or fleeting amongst the bereaved, as opposed to chronic, persistent or severe amongst those who are depressed.

  • Sadness

  • Melancholy

  • Low energy

  • Heightened weepiness

  • Persistent tears

  • Despair

  • Change in appetite

  • Change in sleep patterns

  • Poor concentration

  • Fatigue

  • Guilt

  • Hopelessness

  • Uncontrollable (happy and sad) memories

Those with a clinical depression (whether concurrent with bereavement or not) report the following list of additional symptoms and feelings:

  • Worthlessness

  • Exaggerated guilt

  • Suicidal thoughts or plans

  • Low self-esteem

  • Powerlessness

  • Helplessness

  • Exaggerated hopelessness

  • Agitation or restlessness

  • Loss of interest in pleasurable activities

  • Depletion (exaggerated fatigue)

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