Coping with Loss and Loneliness During the Holidays

Clara Misenhelter (Wicoff) Submitted photo 2023



By Clara Misenhelter

Southwind Extension District


The holiday season is here. It can be a joyous time, but not always or for everyone. For many, especially those feeling emotionally distant or those who have recently experienced a loss, it is a time of year that can leave us particularly vulnerable to feelings as we are pressured to “get in the holiday spirit.” While there is not any one best way to cope with these feelings, consider these tips for coping with loss and loneliness during the holidays:

  • Accept your feelings. Give yourself permission to feel how you feel. Whatever you are feeling is appropriate.
  • Do what feels right to you. Remember that you can opt out of a holiday event or tradition if it will be too much for you. Make a plan for comforting activities you can do instead. Consider asking someone to check in on you.
  • Get support. Talk to loved ones about your needs. If you or someone you know is in crisis or seeking emotional support, call or text 988 to connect with the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. You can also chat with them online at


One year ago, K-State Research and Extension hosted a webinar about coping with loss and loneliness during the holidays. To learn more about this topic, you can view the webinar recording online at You can also join Tara Solomon-Smith and me at the Iola Public Library on December 7th at 6:30 PM for a free program on coping with loss and loneliness during the holidays. For more information, please contact me at [email protected] or 620-365-2242.


Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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