S1:E16 | How To Cope With Losing A Loved One

S1:E16 | How To Cope With Losing A Loved One

TDMP 16 | Coping With Loss


Have you ever lost a loved one? In today’s episode, Destiny Malibu and DJ Dezzee give some helpful tips on how to cope with loss and grief. Having recently lost their grandfather, they share what has helped them through this hard time.

Listen to the podcast here


How To Cope With Losing A Loved One

We are so excited to be back. We missed you guys.

Thanks for coming again.

We are going to be talking about some more mental health topics. If you are new to the show, we are a mental health-focused show. We want to build a community of people who are working on themselves and talking about things that are going on in their lives and feel like they can bounce those ideas off with other people and like-minded people, and continually grow every single day. That’s what we’re about around here. Some of the topics we’re going to be talking about now are going to be a little heavy. One of the first ones that we are going to be discussing is how to deal with the loss of a loved one.

We are going to be in another episode pretty soon here talking about how to deal with the holiday seasons. Holiday seasons can be very tough for people during this time of year, especially if you’re dealing with the loss of a loved one. Dezzee and I are going to start by talking about how to manage and cope with that loss. I’m not sure if you guys know this, if you follow us, @DestinyMalibu and @DJDezzee on social media, but we lost our grandfather.

He was 85 years young.

We love him so much, and we miss him. It’s been a tough week just trying to navigate through those emotions. We have experienced loss, and that is never something that is easy to deal with. Our Grandpa Doug, in particular, who we lost, lived with us our whole lives. That in particular has been difficult because he’s someone that we’ve been used to seeing every day for as long as I’ve been alive.

We have all experienced loss, and that is something that is never easy to deal with. Click To Tweet

That’s been hitting home and it’s been hard, but we want to talk with you guys about how to work through those emotions because losing a loved one and dealing with death is something that is unavoidable for all of us in the human experience. All of us are going to experience losing someone at some point. If this is something that we all are going to experience, how can we work through this?

Also, be there for each other and help each other because you’re not in this alone. We’re in this together.

We want to be here for you and want to share with you some tips on how to cope with such a severe loss. The first tip I want to give you is to talk about your feelings. You are going to probably feel a wide range of emotions. Everybody is different in what they’re feeling. Some people experience immense anger. Some people experience immense sadness, grief, guilt, denial, and shock. There are so many different emotions that you are probably going to experience. Our suggestion is to just make sure you let yourself feel all of them.

You don’t want to bottle it up. You got to let it out.

None of those emotions are wrong.

It’s okay to have your feelings.

It’s okay to ride that wave because it’s going to change each day as you are adjusting to this new reality. We want to remind you not to bottle up those feelings and to talk with somebody. Talk with somebody about how you were feeling and what you were going through. I know that in our family, we all were feeling different emotions.

Yes, we were.

We still are. When we found out in the initial moments, it was a combination of shock, anger, sadness, and grief. You have to remind yourself that it is normal to feel all of those emotions, and sometimes, even all at once. That’s okay.

Feeling your emotions also can cause you to neglect yourself. We don’t want you doing that. It’s important to remember to eat food, drink water, and get plenty of rest along the way because those are some of our survival things. We need to rest, eat food to survive and drink water.

I know a lot of people that I’ve talked with, myself included, sometimes, when I’m dealing with a stressful time, there can be different responses. Sometimes we undereat, overeat, turning to alcohol, or something to try to numb us. It’s important during a time of grief to the best of your ability to try and just sit with your feelings and try to prioritize that self-care and not forget that taking care of yourself during a period of grief is one of the most important times to take care of yourself because your body is already under so much emotional and psychological stress that it’s so important to remember and not neglect to take care of yourself physically.

Make sure that if it’s not you personally and it’s a friend or loved one, check in on them and say, “Did you eat today? Is there something I can bring you?” Try to be there for each other because it can be pretty challenging sometimes when you’re dealing with that much grief to even think about yourself. Another tip we want to share with you guys is being patient with yourself because sometimes it can take many years or months until you feel like you’re somewhat at a place of normalcy in your emotions as you’re going through and grieving something that big of a deal. Be patient with yourself because it might feel like, “Am I going to feel this way and this huge hole in my heart forever?”

I can say that because I have lost friends and family members before, you never stop missing somebody, but the pain does ease a little bit over time. It’s a reminder to yourself that you’re not going to feel this way forever. You’re not going to feel this huge sadness forever. That’s important to remember, especially when it can feel so overwhelming and you’re like, “I can’t sustain this level of emotional volatility for very long.” It’s a reminder that it will get better, and to let yourself feel those emotions and understanding that the missing doesn’t go away, but the pain will ease with time. Give yourself time.

Don’t forget that just because you’re missing someone and maybe you’re afraid that you’re going to miss somebody, you don’t have to forget them. There are plenty of ways to remember your loved one, through photos, stories, creating a celebration of life photo book, or something along those lines that will help you to always remember the person that you lost.

A lot of times, we can find comfort when we’re missing somebody if we were lucky enough to be able to have a piece of their clothing, like a jacket, hat, or bracelet. Sometimes, even just photos, being able to look at photos and cherish memories since, and if they wore a specific type of scent.

Many of those things can take us back into that moment with that person and help in those moments when we’re very desperately missing somebody. I want to remind you guys to have that coat, memory, or something that you can turn to on hand, so in those moments, you know a remedy that you can turn to that you know immediately is going to make you feel a little bit better.

I know that whenever I’m going to be playing rummy and cards, I will always think of grandpa because he was the first one to teach me how to play rummy.

Some amazing memory I have of my grandpa is my grandpa always calling me his Marilyn Monroe. He loved watching my music and my music videos. We’re both crying now. We got to pull it together. He loved watching our music and loved watching Dezzee and I perform. It’s just important to remember that you can talk about those memories. It’s nice to know that you still have those memories. You still have those belongings you can turn to and still feel close to that person. It’s so important to talk about those memories, let yourself reminisce, and feel the memory of their presence because it really helps.

There’s one thing that he loved to say when we would play rummy. He had a saying for every card that he’d pick up. One that sticks out is eight, skate, and donate.

He loves to say that. He had a bunch of sayings for every single time we are playing cards. I wasn’t ever the best at playing cards and still, I’m not, but we have fun memories of our grandpa. He loved to play chess. He’s a big game player.

He’d take us to play tennis, too, when we were little kids.

One of my favorite memories of him is from when I was a little girl, he and I were both obsessed with pistachios. I was obsessed with pistachio ice cream. He loved pistachios. I remember he would get a 25-pound bag of pistachios.

Maybe a pound. A 25-pound is huge.

Maybe it looked like 25 pounds because I was five. I just remember a huge bag of pistachios. We would just sit there in silence, cracking open those pistachios, and eating them for hours. I always think of my grandpa when I eat pistachios. It’s the little things like that to remember and hold onto. It helps to share that with somebody when you’re missing them and to think about something positive about that person. Here are two more tips we have for you. One is a lot of times, we lose somebody unexpectedly or always think we’re going to have more time. A lot of times, we don’t feel like we got to say everything that we wanted to say.

Something that can be helpful with the grieving process is to write a letter to that person that you lost and let yourself say everything that you wanted to say that maybe you didn’t get a chance to. Let all those emotions out. This is something that helps because I know a lot of people, when losing someone, are like, “I didn’t get to tell them I love you for the last time. I didn’t get to tell them about that one time in my life that meant so much to me, a deep dark secret, or whatever it was.” Write it in a letter. This can be cleansing and beneficial for our mental health to get that out on paper and release it from our bodies.

This is something I highly recommend. Last but not least, if you are severely struggling, we recommend always that you talk to a professional and seek professional help because no one is going to have better answers for you than a professional. Talking to a friend, family member, or someone trusted that you love is also extremely beneficial. Talking to a professional, if you have that opportunity, there are online hotlines for free, and you can find resources like that.

I’d love to say BetterHelp because better help is a very affordable online version of therapy. If you have an in-person therapist, that’s amazing, too. We want to remind you that even though you might be feeling so much now, you are going to be okay. Healing doesn’t mean forgetting. Cherish those memories and be patient with yourself. Give yourself time and surround yourself with people that you love.

Healing doesn't mean forgetting to cherish memories. Be patient with yourself. Give yourself time and surround yourself with people you love. Click To Tweet

If you want to share any happy memories of the people in your life that you may have lost, please feel free to send it to AskDestinyMalibu.com, and we’d be happy to read those.

On our YouTube channel at Destiny Malibu, you can leave comments about your loved ones there on this specific episode. That would be beautiful to read. We love you so much. We are so excited to be talking about mental health at the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas and sharing with you something important to talk about.

You never know when it’s going to happen. Sometimes, you expect it, but it’s important to talk about it.

We are so grateful for you and for this community of people focused on bettering themselves every day. We love you so much, and we will see you in the next episode.


Important Links


S1:E3 | How Destiny Overcame Her High School Eating Disorder – Part II

S1:E3 | How Destiny Overcame Her High School Eating Disorder – Part II

TDMP 3 | Eating Disorder


On to today’s episode…

A lot of young people struggle with self-image issues that rob them of joy and happiness. So what causes a lot of these problems? Comparing ourselves to others. We think because we don’t look like the “in crowd” or the “beautiful people”, that we aren’t beautiful, and that we don’t matter.

Destiny went to high school in Malibu, a town loaded with beautiful, wealthy, famous people and their equally beautiful children. In trying to look like them and fit in, she developed a serious eating disorder. So what did she do to overcome it? The answer is super simple. She tells you about it in this episode of The Destiny Malibu Podcast.

Listen to the podcast here


How Destiny Overcame Her High School Eating Disorder – Part II

I want you to check in with yourself and start to pay attention to the thoughts that you are thinking.

Think about the things that make you happy. What makes you happy? Do you like it when your hair looks a certain way? Do you like it when you wear a certain color? It’s all those little things and details in your life. Maybe you are into shoes. You make your outfit match your shoes.

We are going to dive into that more. Self-care is an act of self-love. Journaling, taking a bath, listening to music that makes you happy, experimenting with fashion, which was a big one for me that helped me with my confidence, finding my sense of style, and learning to express myself in all of these creative ways helps you learn about yourself, learn what makes you feel confident and feel good. That translates into a greater relationship of self-love with yourself. All of those things matter.

Self-care is an act of self-love. Click To Tweet

Another act of self-care is working through trauma. Going to therapy is huge for anybody who is looking to improve their relationship with themselves. It’s seeking therapy, working through your traumas, and figuring out what experiences in your life caused you to have the emotions that you are feeling because there usually are experiences. Maybe someone said something to you one time, or you had an embarrassing moment. Those things can stick with you.

It’s so important to figure out how to unstick from those things that are not serving you and to search within yourself with a professional if that’s available to you or even a friend. The first choice would be a professional if that’s something that you are able to do at this point in your life but if you can’t afford that yet, it’s talking to a friend, talking to a school counselor, or speaking with somebody that is going to listen or someone at church.

There usually are people within the community or someone that you can turn to and look to for advice. We will be talking about that in another episode as well. Self-care is an act of self-love. I want to share a story with you also because self-image or how you perceive yourself is a huge part of self-love. All four years of high school were the most challenging in learning to love me.

It’s a common time when a lot of people are discovering themselves.

It’s a common theme during that time in your life to figure out who you are. There are also additional challenges at that time of your life. Your hormones are changing. Puberty. You are trying to figure out where you fit in, what you like, and what your dislikes are. That is a time of learning about yourself. Desiree and I grew up in Malibu. In Malibu, you have a lot of gorgeous people. You have a lot of people from the industry. We went to school with Gigi Hadid and Bella Hadid. Gigi was in my class. They are wonderful people and sweet girls. We went to school with Milly and Becky Rosso from The Suite Life of Zack & Cody. They also did a continuation of Legally Blonde. They are super sweet too. There are a lot of gorgeous people.

Being in high school during this time, you are going through a lot of changes. You are trying to figure out who you are. I did notice that there were a lot of other people in our school that were also going through a similar thing. When you are surrounded by incredibly beautiful people at that age when you are not so sure of yourself, it can and it did for me take a little bit of a hit on my self-esteem. I’m wondering where I fit in on that scale of beauty standards.

Unfortunately, at that time in my life, I ended up having an eating disorder throughout a large majority of my high school years. Even though all body types are beautiful, in Malibu, for whatever reason, being very thin was the favored physique type. Unfortunately, that led me down a path of an eating disorder. That was traumatic for me. I had body dysmorphia. I thought that I was way bigger than I was. My weight fluctuated all over the place throughout my high school years in trying different diets. That was hard.

I realized looking back that comparison is the thief of joy. A sunset and a flower look nothing alike but they are equally beautiful. It can be easy whether you are looking at someone like Gigi whom we went to school with or a beautiful model online to wonder where your worth fits in beautywise in the typical standards of beauty when you see people who are undeniably gorgeous. When you see that, it can be difficult not to compare.

A lot of people nowadays struggle with comparisons, whether it’s social media. Social media is a big one because you have people who are filtered and photoshopped. Some people are naturally gorgeous. In general, it can be difficult not to compare but what I learned at this stage in my life and has helped me with my self-image journey is understanding that comparison is the thief of joy. You don’t need to look like someone else to be beautiful. You don’t even need to look like the typical suggested standard of beauty to be beautiful. Being beautiful is being uniquely yourself.

The right person will come along, see you, and think that you are beautiful the way you are.

Even if a person didn’t come along and even if it was you for the rest of your life, and you didn’t even meet a special someone, you are beautiful because there is no one in the world exactly like you. You are a 100% unique, beautiful, and gorgeous creation. Something that helped me get out of this place of doubt and self-critical behaviors was to take a step back and realize that I don’t need to look like somebody else. I need to look like the best version of myself.

That’s what I want you to remember when you are going out in the world, when you are looking at social media, and when you have beautiful friends. You don’t need to look like someone else. You don’t need to compare yourself to someone else. The only person you should ever be competing with is yourself. Take in realistic thoughts, which is not something I understood at that age looking at someone who’s a model that’s 5′10”. I‘m 5’2”. Dezz is 5’3”. We are at the same height.

It is not physically possible. No matter how petite I got, it would never be possible for my body type to look like somebody who is 5′10”. That’s okay because someone who’s 5′10” and 5’2” is equally beautiful. No matter where you fall on that scale of height, it’s not about looking like someone else. It’s about, “What does the healthiest version of me look like? I shifted my mentality from, “I want to be the skinniest. I want to be this or that,” to, “How can I be the healthiest? What does the healthiest me look like?” That changed everything.