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When should I get rid of their stuff?
Whenever the #$%@ you want.
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One of the most common discussions in the grief groups I facilitate is when it is "appropriate" to get rid of your loved one's stuff.
Short answer: whenever you damn well please.
Long answer: also, whenever you damn well please, but in bold italics.
Getting rid of (or not getting rid of) your loved one's stuff does not indicate how well you are grieving. On the contrary, those grieving healthily tend to have many of their loved one's belongings. It doesn't matter if you've gotten remarried, moved to a new home, or any other conceivable event. Continuing bonds with the people we have lost are physically and emotionally the healthiest way to grieve, including keeping their things - if we want to.
When people tell us, "It might be good to give away their stuff; it might give you closure," - that's more about how *they* feel. That advice truly comes from a loving place, but don't feel pressured to give away belongings because someone else feels you should. They also may erroneously believe that the Stages of Grief are somehow at play here because they honestly don't know that the Stages are somewhat of a myth. (For more on that, read about it here and in an excellent piece by What's Your Grief here.)
For myself, I have a few things of my late husband’s out on display, including some taxidermy. My husband Sam and I also continue to use some of the fishing rods I inherited from Jim. In addition, I have a box of hats and fishing gear that belonged to my late husband. I gift them to people every once in a while. It's been over a decade since he passed away, but that doesn't mean his things don't mean something to someone who loved him. None of these actions mean I’m somehow “stuck”, and however YOU choose to handle your loved ones things will be right for you.
Don't judge yourself for not wanting to go through their things or get rid of things. There is NO timeline for it. You're not delayed or doing grief wrong because you have had their stuff in a closet or on a table for 3 months - or 30 years. You're also not doing it wrong if you decide to get rid of their things immediately. It is entirely up to YOU on what you want to do.
If you’ve learned anything from me over the years, I hope that it is that grief and grieving are personal to YOU, and that you can choose how you want to do it. We’ve all had our control taken away from us in some way, our grief path is a way to take that control back.