I'm almost 30, and perhaps lucky to say that I've never lost someone really close to me - nor any family members. I have, however, experienced the death of students, suite mates (in college) and parents of friends.
Every circumstance has been pretty similar. There is a period of just plain numbness. Then, grief comes in waves - most of the time I was grieving simply because others were.
In every circumstance however, the one positive thing that came out of the loss, was the bonding between the people who came together to mourn. I saw several relationships deepen in ways that could only be provoked by such tragedy. When a star football player was killed in a car accident his senior year, I saw a new side of our high school that had never been seen before. Suddenly students took the time to respect and listen to one another. Several kids made very positive attitude changes. Many hurting friendships were healed.
So while I agree that losing a loved one is possibly the most tragic thing that happens to us in life, there is always hope and something positive on the other side.
I concur. I've lost 2 family members to death, and I fear my parents are on the verge of driving my boyfriend of a year away, because they don't agree with homosexuality. They say it's a choice...the impact loss can have is profound, especially when it's yourself you're losing.