57% Say Covid Restrictions Made Coping With Grief More Difficult

57% Say Covid Restrictions Made Coping With Grief More Difficult

In a recent survey by CRY Ireland (Cardiac Risk in the Young), it was reported that Covid-19 restrictions have impacted 57% of people who are grieving the loss of someone. CRY Ireland is an Irish charity that offers bereavement support and cardiac screenings to those that have lost someone to sudden cardiac death. 


Respondents noted that isolation has contributed to depression and feelings of grief to re-emerge. Not being able to seek comfort in friends and families and normal routines being thrown out of balance has also intensified their grieving thoughts with loneliness and lack of human contact also magnifying their grief. One respondent said “My grief was exacerbated by isolation and lack of physical contact with family and friends. A hug means so much.“ 


Others expressed that they had lost someone during the pandemic and felt grieving was difficult without normal funeral procedures “My friend didn’t get a funeral, we couldn’t mourn her. I couldn’t see her in her final days and that will always stay with me. I wanted to hug her and tell her I loved her. It’s been the hardest time of my life.” 


While 98% of people said they had experienced the death of someone close to them, only 38% sought professional support whether it was information around the process of grief, utilising a listening service or bereavement counselling. Although 80% agreed that the death of a loved one has had long lasting effects on their mood and mental state. According to feedback this has only been heightened by Covid-19 restrictions. 


Irish Model and jewellery designer Emily MacKeogh lost her fiancé, Killian only five hours after moving to Dubai to start a new life together back in March 2019. He had passed away from Sudden Cardiac Death (SADS) at age 32. Emily commented “Losing someone suddenly completely turns your world upside down but not being able to turn to your friends and family during restrictions is unfathomable. When I lost Killian I spoke to the CRY bereavement services and it helped me to work through the difficult time. Grieving should not be dealt with alone and I truly recommend seeking support for those who may need it.”


When asked about the biggest concerns around seeking counselling, 55% said that cost would be a major factor, 36% would have anxiety around discussing personal issues and 43% said they wouldn’t know where to find a good counsellor. 


Noelle Condon, Chairperson for CRY Ireland said ”As we have seen, 45% of people would rather keep grief to themselves than burden others around them and we want those people to know that they don’t have to grieve on their own and that there are other options available to them. Grief is dealt by many and shouldn’t be dealt with alone. CRY Ireland is here to help those who cannot turn to their friends and family.”


Lucia Ebbs, CEO of CRY Ireland said “This report has given us a greater understanding of the stigma around grief in Ireland and we want to break down these barriers. 99% of people agreed that bereavement counselling and support services should be talked more openly about.”


CRY Ireland, offer free counselling and bereavement support services to those that have lost someone to sudden cardiac death. To provide these support programmes to families for free it will cost approximately 150,000 euro over the next three years, CRY are looking to raise these funds to continue providing these valuable services for free to the families that have been affected by sudden cardiac death. 

For more information on these supports, or if you would like to donate, please go to www.CRY.ie

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