How Trauma Can Help You Grow

Posted by in dating after loss, dating in midlife | 0 comments


In this episode, Krista St-Germain speaks about post-traumatic growth – how trauma can help you grow after loss.

Krista St-Germain is a Master Certified Life Coach, Post-Traumatic Growth and grief expert, widow, and host of The Widowed Mom Podcast. When her husband was killed by a drunk driver in 2016, Krista’s life was completely flipped upside down. After therapy helped her uncurl from the fetal position, Krista discovered Life Coaching, Post Traumatic Growth and learned the tools she needed to move forward.

In this episode of Last First Date Radio:

  • Why we have such a hard time with grief
  • How the 5 stages of grief mislead people who have lost a loved one
  • What is post-traumatic growth?
  • Five things to consider to determine if you’re ready to date again after loss

EP 561: Krista St-Germain – How Trauma Can Help You Grow

Why do we have such a hard time with grief?

One of the main reasons is we think we understand grief, but we don’t. The five stages of grief was an anecdotal study on hospice patients who were dealing with their own loss. It wasn’t intended to be formulaic or linear. Grief never ends. Something magical doesn’t happen after a year.

How do the 5 stages of grief mislead those who have experienced loss of a loved one?

The five stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. It can be seen as one way to get through grief. All emotions are welcome. Think of it like a big squiggly line that’s not predictable or formulaic. We can’t undo the loss. You will feel better. Your difficult emotions are not a problem to be solved.  

One of the theories I like better is the dual process model of grief. It teaches that we can divide our lives into two buckets of activities. Bucket one is thinking about loss and the second bucket is restoration. 

What is post-traumatic growth?

After a traumatic event, people either go down in their level of wellness, come back up to where they were before, or have greater levels of wellness and satisfaction. Post traumatic growth is taking what happened to inform a better life in the future. 

What did you learn from your trauma that you’d like to do differently and redesign your life? It’s not a slight on what you had before. 

What are five things to consider to determine if you’re ready to date again after loss?

  1. Don’t go into dating because there’s a problem to solve and a relationship is the answer to that. 
  2. Date because you want to date, not because you’re told to date.
  3. Be in a place where you’re okay if other people don’t like that you’re dating.
  4. Do the inner work to define deal breakers and must-haves.
  5. Know and like your reasons to date. You may be dating to have experiences or see what it’s like or have some fun. All is okay.

What are your final words of advice for anyone who wants to go on their last first date?

If you can hold dating loosely, you’re still the same you no matter what happens. You will not be more or less valuable. Have fun with it.

Watch this episode on YouTube

Connect with Krista

Free gift: Quiz to discover if you’re stuck in a grief plateau




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