Diarised Reflections on COVID-19 and Bereavement: Disruptions and Affordances

Abstract

COVID-19 lockdown and social distancing measures have restricted funerals and memorial events and have limited the face-to-face social networks that grieving people might normally be able to draw upon for emotional support. However, while there is considerable expert informed speculation about the impacts of grief and “COVID bereavement”, detailed accounts of experiences of bereavement and bereavement support during the pandemic have the potential to enrich and provide nuance and subtlety to the evidence base. This paper draws on diary accounts of bereavement support volunteers in the UK, who have been providing support for the bereaved through these challenging times. These reveal layers of complexity to the experiences of loss, grief and bereavement during these extraordinary times. However, they also point to a number of additional themes that lend a more positive valence to the suspension of normal social expectations and memorial practices associated with the pandemic, which, we argue should be reflected upon for their potential to address the discontents of contemporary governance of end of life and bereavement.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/10541373211044069
Divisions: College of Health & Life Sciences > School of Psychology
College of Health & Life Sciences > Aston Institute of Health & Neurodevelopment (AIHN)
College of Health & Life Sciences > Applied Health Research Group
College of Health & Life Sciences
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities > Sociology and Policy
Additional Information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
Uncontrolled Keywords: Sociology and Political Science,Health(social science)
Publication ISSN: 1552-6968
Full Text Link:
Related URLs: https://journal ... 541373211044069 (Publisher URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2021-11-17
Published Online Date: 2021-11-17
Accepted Date: 2021-11-01
Authors: West, Karen
Rumble, Hannah
Shaw, Rachel (ORCID Profile 0000-0002-0438-7666)
Cameron, Ailsa
Roleston, Caity

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