In the words of The King, Elvis Presley himself, “I’ll have a blue Christmas without you.” The holidays can be a hard time for many people. We feel so much pressure to be thankful, make merry, and attend or host a score of events while looking flawlessly festive and creating magazine-worthy spreads for meals and parties. It can be a lot to handle for anyone, but for those who may be suffering the loss of a loved one, going through a divorce or break-up, or dealing with mental health challenges, the holidays can be especially trying.
We have probably all experienced one or more of these issues from time to time. Last year, still reeling from the end of a relationship some months before, which everyone assumed I was already over, and feeling incredibly lonely, I was just going through the motions of holiday cheer. I put on a happy face for my friends and family, not wanting to ruin their good time with my sadness, while at the same time, desperately wishing someone would notice that something was wrong.
This year, I am doing much better. Others may not be so lucky. Everyone grieves differently, and some challenges don’t have a quick fix. The holidays can really emphasize a loved one’s absence or trigger mental health issues. Reach out to your friends and family; let them know they are loved and supported. Be gentle with one another. And if you or a loved one needs a little extra help, check out these resources from your library.
Reading list by Becky Fesler.
Grace Like Scarlett: Grieving with Hope after Miscarriage and Loss by Adriel Booker
Boy Meets Depression: Or, Life Sucks and Then You Live by Kevin Breel
How to be Yourself: Quiet your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety by Ellen Hendriksen
Winter Blues: Everything You Need to Know to Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder by Norman E. Rosenthal
Death of a Parent: Transition to a New Adult Identity by Debra Umberson
How to Fix a Broken Heart by Guy Winch