Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Is Grief Contagious?

What is the relationship of feelings of inferiority and insecurity to grief? You grieve loss but not a failure to attain something which is still in the realm of possibility. The problem is that it leads to the no man’s land of pure misery for which there's little or no catharsis. On the other hand, can grief itself lead to feelings of inferiority and insecurity? You’d think that the aggrieved individual, the mourner commands a certain degree of respect and even admiration—when they show an ability to push on in spite of everything. But death is frightening to many people who often look at solitude as a disease. You may at first commiserate with the cancer victim, but then you go through a secondary stage where, in order to protect yourself (from the fear it could happen to you), you begin to blame the sufferer. If they’d avoided diet sodas, cigarettes, booze, they might not have been hit with this or that scourge. On globally, you look at the grief stricken mourner as being infected with a highly contagious disease, known as life, from which you seek to be spared.

read "The Findings" by Francis Levy, Evergreen Review

and listen to "Bernadette" by The Four Tops

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