"Get over it"
Perhaps three of the most damaging words we can say to a person walking through loss, grief or trauma are; "get over it." And yet, these words are spoken all too often.
The craziest part about this statement, is that somehow the person saying it actually believes that they are helping! In a somewhat twisted way of thinking, they believe that this statement is going to miraculously cause the person stuck in incredible pain to simply and instantly be completely different and over the loss, grief or trauma... this logic is indeed ludicrous!
The statement "get over it" implies that the person needing to "get over it" is somehow choosing to "be under it."
It is as though they are enjoying the journey (a journey all too often filled with pain, loneliness, fear, uncertainty, physical/ relational/ emotional and spiritual challenges). Certainly there are a very small amount of people who in fact choose to live in this state - but this is rare. On the contrary, most people that I have encountered over the past 20 years desperately want to be in a much happier and 'in control' position and be able to enjoy a fulfilled life without diminishing the loss of their loved one.
I have always believed that this "get over it" statement is far more about the insecurity and emotional ignorance of the person making it.
Perhaps it is their lack of understanding of the process an individual takes when walking the journey of grief. Perhaps it is their inability to empathise and sympathise with the person walking the journey. Whatever the reason, it is, in my opinion, a reflection on them.
Individuals can learn to navigate life with the mountain of grief being present. They can learn, develop and begin to excel even within their new reality, but it's not because one day they just "got over it" - it is because they decided to take the journey and learn to "Live Life Well" even with loss in their world.
I implore you to continually remind yourself and others that we need to be kind to ourselves and be kind to others.
We are to speak hope, encouragement and support to those who are walking very personal and difficult journeys, the details of which we will probably never know the full extent of.
May we never be one of the voices who flippantly says to anyone to "get over it!"
Have a great week.
By Steve Morrison