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Retail Therapy as Grief Support

Published: December 26, 2022

Losing a loved one is a difficult experience that can be overwhelming.

When coping with grief, many people turn to retail therapy as a way to provide comfort and relief from the pain of loss.

But what exactly is retail therapy? How can it help us cope with grief?

In this article, we will explore the concept of retail therapy and discuss how it can be beneficial to those dealing with grief.

Some people may think of shopping as a frivolous activity that provides little value or emotional support in tough times. However, research has shown that there is a link between certain behaviors and feelings while shopping and the feelings of sadness after a loss.

According to some experts, there are three main ways that retail therapy can help people deal with grief: it provides an escape or distraction from difficult emotions, it helps flood the brain with feel-good chemicals like serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin to reduce stress and anxiety, and it can help people feel more connected to others during a difficult time.

Overall, while retail therapy may not be a perfect or permanent solution to grief and loss, it can certainly be an effective tool in the short term.

What Is Retail Therapy?

Retail therapy is the practice of using shopping as a form of emotional relief.

It is not about buying lavish items or overspending; rather, it’s about finding joy and comfort in small purchases.

A person might use retail therapy to reward themselves after stressful events, to treat themselves when feeling down, or just to create positive feelings associated with shopping for something special.

Retail Therapy While Grieving

Retail therapy while grieving can provide an outlet for your emotions during tough times.

Shopping can be an important part of the healing process because it helps redirect your energy away from negative thoughts related to the loss and towards something that brings you some joy or satisfaction.

A simple purchase like flowers or jewelry can make you feel better and bring some uplifting moments into your day.

It is important to keep in mind that retail therapy should be used in moderation, especially if money is tight or if material items are not your primary source of comfort during difficult times.

You should always focus on emotional support first, such as talking with friends and family, seeking professional counselling, or engaging in activities that promote self-care like yoga or meditation. If retail therapy does bring you some measure of comfort, make sure it fits within your budget and lifestyle so that it does not lead to further stress down the road.

A few ways to use retail therapy constructively for yourself and others, would be to buy special gifts for others. If the act of walking around a store browsing helps keep your mind occupied and comforted, but you don't want to spend a lot of money or you don't need anything for yourself, look for something that a loved one might appreciate as a surprise gift. This little act of love will be a welcome surprise for them and will give you the joy and warmth of giving to others. Another option would be buying small items for homeless shelters, food banks, or other non-profit organizations that would appreciate donations! This will help you control your spending and bringing items into your own home and also help others. 

Grieving the loss of someone close can be a lengthy and difficult process; however, there are ways to find relief from the pain associated with this experience.

Retail therapy provides one way to do this by giving us an opportunity to treat ourselves while focusing on something else besides our sadness and grief. While it should never replace other forms of emotional support, retail therapy may help us ease our pain while providing us with an outlet for our emotions during difficult times.

In order to maintain healthy spending habits while grieving through retail therapy, we need to ensure that our purchases stay within our budget and lifestyle so we don't end up creating additional financial stressors later on down the line.

With mindful consideration, retail therapy can provide us with moments of peace amidst times of sorrow when we lose someone dear to us.

In addition to the bereavement services for the families we serve, Roupp funeral home also provides grief support. Visit our website at for more information.

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