Grief can feel very overwhelming. Whether it’s the death of a loved one, or grief caused by some other kind of loss eg job loss, end of a relationship, infertility diagnosis, physical injury and even minor loses, many people will seek the services of a psychologist to help them with their journey through grief.
Stages of grief
If you search for information on the stages of grief you will see there are commonly 5 stages of grief that are referred to. These include denial, anger, bargaining, and acceptance.
However you can experience these stages in any order. The process of grief is usually different for every person. It can feel like you are on a roller coaster. It can feel like you go backwards a step for every few steps forward. At some point that is right for the individual the loss is integrated into your new life. Even though the loss stays with you the intensity reduces and is no longer paralysing.
How Grief Therapy or Counselling Helps
Grief is a normal human response to loss. Some people can work through it with the love and support of friends and family. However for many reasons people will often seek the support or extra support provided by professional grief therapy. In the initial stages counselling can make painful feelings more intense. This is because the process allows you to fully focus on the experience and explore it.
If you are experiencing grief (or someone you know is experiencing it) you will find that you may want to talk about your story over and over again. You may become worried that your family and friends don’t want to hear your story anymore. Or you may find that other people give you their expectations on when you should feel better, or when you should stop talking about it. Or have other unrealistic expectations of what you should be capable of. In these cases in can be helpful to have the support of a grief counsellor.
Counselling for grief or grief support is often requested by those who need to fulfil roles as parents or carers of those who are also grieving. In this case you and need time-out for your own grief and to receive support. Having support and a safe, accepting environment that includes regular time set aside just for you helps to make a big difference. Grief counselling may also provide hope and comfort during one of the most confusing and crisis filled time of your life.
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