It’s okay to be relieved when someone dies.
You don’t have to feel bad about that, either.
It doesn’t mean you didn’t care about that person, or that you won’t miss them. Having mixed feelings doesn’t testify to their death, it testifies to the relationship you had with them when they were still alive.
It’s alright if you’re the only person that’s relieved. You most likely had a different relationship with the person that passed; a more difficult one. Maybe you had fights, or maybe you just had your feelings hurt more often than not. Whatever the reason is, you can take a full breath. It’s most likely someone close to you, someone that you knew well. It’s someone that you let in, maybe a little too far. The pain of losing someone is real, and although the sting isn’t meant to last, it turns into something different.
From what I’ve learned, sometimes, relief has its own pain. You may be relieved, but are you still angry? Are you still harboring negative feelings towards that person? It’s hard to justify being mad at a dead person. I’m still trying to find a reason for it to this day. The saying ‘beating a dead horse’ couldn’t apply more. There’s nothing you can change, there’s nothing more that can be said, so why continue to harbor it? It is very much so easier said than done, but that’s one of the only ways to heal. Just like that person dies, you must let your anger die with them. It may take months, even years. There’s no right way to let your true feelings about a person come out, furthermore, no one can tell you how to feel. Your expression may come out in many different ways.
You may not find solace in talking to other people. I’ve gotten yelled at for how I feel. I’ve had people tell me ‘I’m morbid for feeling relief’ or ‘how dare you talk about that person like that’. I’ve been called a lot of things. I’ve found release with the people that know me best, that knew the relationship I had with this person the best. These people knew both of us, and knew how difficult we both were. I can say a lot of things, both good and bad. There were a lot of things left unspoken that I wish I could have said.
At the very least, and maybe the boldest statement I can make,
I’m happy it’s over.
I’m not happy the person died the way they did, but I’m happy my frustration with them did. I’m happy the constant arguing did. The fear of disappointing them, the need to please them, every upset feeling I had. I no longer had to dread phone calls or be scared when they wanted to spend time with me. I no longer had a reason to be afraid.
I’m relieved that they died, and I’m perfectly okay with that.