We have put this resource together to help support you if you are grieving the loss of a loved one.
Grief through COVID-19.
Grief at any time is difficult, but if you are bereaved as a result of COVID-19 you may have a potentially different experience. We want you to remember that you are not alone, and though you may be more physically isolated during this time, we at #TeamMDX are here for you if you need to reach out.
Grief is a unique process and your journey will not be the same as others. This article from the charity Barnardo's explains how grieving does not happen in a 'straight line', is complex and is different for everyone.
There is no ‘right way’ to grieve. You may experience a variety of emotions that you switch between while you process the loss. These emotional changes can also impact on you physically. You may feel very tired or struggle to sleep, you may lose your appetite or eat more than usual, and you may find that you struggle to concentrate on any one task. These are all normal experiences.
If you feel that you are struggling, it's important to reach out for specialist support. It is important to reach out for specialist support if you feel that you are not coping. You may also find it useful to speak to a professional even if you think that you are coping well.That includes us at #TeamMDX.
Reach out to your Academic Advisor and/or Programme Leader to let them know of your loss. They can discuss how they can support you, and what may be useful for you in terms of your academic work. They may suggest that you have a conversation with the Progression and Support team who can discuss with you your options such as taking a break from your studies or applying for extenuating circumstances.
It's your decision as to what you choose to do and the Progression and Support team as well as your Academic Advisor will help you.
Fika is an evidence based mental fitness app designed to build emotional fitness. Download on the App Store or Google Play to access short and snappy 5 minute workouts to improve your confidence, motivation, positivity, employability, focus, sleep and to decrease stress.
Middlesex offers a number of other online wellbeing platforms to support you. Building a wellbeing toolkit of information, activities and support that you can turn to is important. For more information about health and wellbeing, read these pages
You may wish to seek support through the Student’s Union advice service which provides impartial confidential advice and support for a range of academic and non-academic issues. MDXSU have also collated a number of support resources as part of MDXSU@Home.
MDX Interfaith group
The MDX Interfaith group is a forum that can enable you to make connections with faith communities within the University, Barnet area and the wider community who may offer you some comfort during this time.
Find information on support teams on UniHub. Counselling and Mental Health are available to support you through your bereavement journey with your mental health and your emotions if you are experiencing psychological distress. They will be able to identify what support you need and refer you to other relevant and trusted services if needed. Find more information and referral procedures on their pages.
If you are a student overseas, please see bespoke support arrangements for you on the Support and wellbeing if you're living abroad page.
They may also recommend, and you may prefer, specialist bereavement support from Cruse Bereavement Care (see more in external support below).
Please reach out to us if you feel that you need a helping hand. We are here for you. #TeamMDX
“That’s really what grief has taught me. That I can survive. I used to be afraid that if I experienced grief it would overcome me and I wouldn’t be able to survive the flood of it, that if I actually felt it I wouldn’t be able to get back up. It’s taught me that I can feel it and it won’t swallow me whole.But we come from a culture where we think people have to be strong. I’m a big believer in being vulnerable, open to grief. That is strength. You can’t know joy unless you know profound sadness. They don’t exist without each other.”
On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler (2005)
If you know somebody who has been recently bereaved, you may be feeling unsure of what to say and do. If they have lost a loved one through COVID-19, they may be facing a type of bereavement which is incredibly challenging.
Research shows that early support and help through the bereavement journey makes it easier to make a recovery with good mental health. Simply being kind and offering your support at this time can be a big help to people who are bereaved.
You do not need to be a professional or have significant training to give help and support. We do also recognise that you yourself may be experiencing additional stressors during this time and we would encourage you to take care of yourself first.
Remember that you are not an expert, and if your loved one is struggling, it would be wise to signpost them to expert advice and support. You will find these service links above for both internal and external support.
A death from COVID-19 may mean there has been or will be: