A person losing a loved one

The Hardships of Losing a Loved One: Obstacles to Face

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  • Losing a loved one is an emotionally challenging experience that can lead to psychological distress, guilt, and anger.
  • Medical and funeral costs can add up quickly following the death of a loved one, and families may need to bear this financial burden.
  • Legal matters such as creating a will, probate proceedings, and estate planning must also be secured.
  • Finally, families must take care of practical matters such as notifying relevant authorities and canceling accounts to honor their departed loved one’s wishes.

Losing a loved one is a challenging, emotionally taxing experience. People can sometimes find themselves in a state of grief and despair that can be hard to escape. Studies have found that the death of a loved one causes psychological distress, leading to physical and emotional symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, and depression. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), nearly two-thirds of adults who experienced the death of a close friend or relativemet the criteria for a major depressive episode within the first three months after suffering their loss.

The sorrow and pain from losing a loved one can often lead to feelings of guilt or anger toward others. This is especially true in cases where the death was sudden or unexpected. A person may start to resent those still living and may even blame themselves for not having done more to prevent the tragedy from occurring. They might also struggle with anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) due to their fear of losing another loved one or their inability to cope with their current grieving process.

Unfortunately, the hardships do not end with emotional heartbreak. Here are a few obstacles you must prepare for when you lose a loved one.

Medical and Funeral Costs

Attending a funeral

Money should be the last thing on a person’s mind after losing a loved one, yet medical and funeral costs can add up quickly. In most cases, families have to bear the financial burden of paying for their lost one’s medical bills and funeral arrangements.

Depending on the accident or illness, your departed loved one’s hospital bills might be pretty high. You may also need to invest in additional services such as embalming, burial plots, and memorial stones. Before making any commitments, it is best to do your research beforehand and figure out the exact costs of medical care and funerals. The estimated cost of a funeral in the United States is between $7,000 and $10,000. Fortunately, medical and life insurance policies can help alleviate some of these costs.

Legal Matters

A departed loved one's last will

When dealing with the death of a loved one, it is essential to be prepared for any legal matters that may arise. This could involve anything from creating a will to probate court proceedings and estate planning.

If your loved one died without leaving behind a will, you must work with an attorney to determine how their property should be distributed among their heirs. You may also need to apply for letters of administration or obtain a grant of probate for legal agreements to be honored by banks and other financial institutions. It’s best to have an experienced probate attorney who can advise you on these matters and handle them properly. Here are a few legal issues you might have to consider when dealing with the death of a loved one:

Creating a will

A will can help you and your family avoid the hassle of managing a deceased loved one’s estate. It is best to create a choice as soon as possible after their death to ensure that their wishes are honored and that all assets are allocated according to their desires.

Probate proceedings

Probate court deals with transferring property from the deceased person to their heirs and paying any outstanding debts and taxes owed by the estate. A probate attorney can help you navigate the legal process and ensure everything is handled correctly.

Estate planning

This involves deciding how a person’s assets should be managed before death. Estate planning also includes setting up trusts for beneficiaries, designing long-term care plans, and addressing potential taxes or liabilities.

Insurance payouts

Your departed loved one’s insurance policies can help cover medical bills, funeral arrangements, and other expenses associated with their passing. Learning more about existing policies is vital before filing a claim to get the most out of the benefits.

Practical Matters

In addition to dealing with medical and funeral expenses, families must also take care of practical matters such as notifying relevant authorities and canceling accounts. You may need to contact your deceased loved one’s employers, banks, credit card companies, utility providers, insurance companies, cellphone service providers, etc., to cancel their accounts. Ensure you keep all documents related to your loved one’s death handy to provide them when needed. If necessary, obtain multiple copies of their death certificate as well.

Final Thoughts

These are just a few of the obstacles you will have to face when dealing with the death of a loved one. It is essential to be prepared and seek help from family, friends, and professionals whenever possible. With the proper support, it is possible to cope with your loss and find peace in knowing that your loved one’s memory will continue to live on in your heart.

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