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Maturational loss (NUR 3130) Grief - Professor

John Marsh
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Grief – Professor

  • Nova Southeastern University
  • Foundations of Professional Nursing (NUR 3130)

Grief, Death and Dying
Types of Loss:
• Actual loss—can be recognized by others (ex: loss of a limb, a child, a valued object
such as money, and a job)
• Perceived loss—experienced by one person but cannot be verified by others (ex: loss of
youth, financial independence, or a valued environment)
Directly related to actual and perceived loss are physical and physiological loss. A person
who loses an arm in an automobile crash suffers from both the physical loss of the arm and
psychological loss that may be caused by altered self-image and the ability to return to
their occupation or activity.
• Maturational loss—experienced as a result of natural developmental process (ex: a first
child losing status when a sibling is born, and the parent of a single child may experience
a sense of loss when they first start school)
• Situational loss—experienced as a result of an unpredictable event (i.e. loss of job, death
of child, or national disaster)
• Anticipatory loss—loss has not yet taken place (ex: A life threatening illness)
o Anticipatory loss is often seen in the families of patients with serious and lifethreatening
illness and may lessen the effect of the actual loss of the family
• Developmental—children leaving home
• Grief—internal emotional reaction to loss
o Normal expressions of grief may be:
– Physical: crying, headache, difficulty sleeping, fatigue
– Emotional: feeling of sadness and yearning
– Social: feeling detached from others and isolating yourself from social
– Spiritual: questioning the reason for your loss, the purpose of pain and
suffering, the purpose of life and the meaning of death
• Mourning— is the actions and expressions of that grief, including symbols and
ceremonies (e.g., a funeral or final celebration of life) that make up the upward
expression of grief.
• Bereavement—state of grieving from loss of a loved one



Maturational loss (NUR 3130) Grief - Professor

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