Help With Grief

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Grief Counseling is Offered for the Following:

Grief Support Group

A Grief support group assists individuals in knowing that they are not alone in this season. They are provided with support and encouragement from others, while at the same time, providing support and encouragement to others.  In the grief support group you have the opportunity to share your story and hear the story of others in a safe environment.  While each individual’s grief story is uniquely their own, there are many parts of the grieving experience that are commonly held and shared by others. Visit the Services Provided page for more information on the Grief Support Group.

Individual Grief Counseling

There are times when individual counseling is needed in addition to, or instead of, a support group.  Such times may include if an individual becomes stuck in grief and the intensity of the grief experience does not decrease over time.  If the depression, which is a normal stage of grief, becomes chronic, or persistent, individual counseling should be considered, or if the individual is experiencing suicidal thoughts. Additional factors, such as trauma and the sudden death of a loved one,  can complicate and add to the weight of grief.   Call today to determine if individual grief counseling will meet your needs.

Corporate Grief Crisis Counseling

There are times when the death of a co-worker or employee impacts the work place in a profound way.  During these times the workers find themselves struggling to perform their work tasks, while navigating the shock and pain of the loss.  In the days following the death of an employee, employers may find it hard to know what to do or say to help.  With Corporate Grief Crisis Counseling I will come out to the work place to provide group and/or individual counseling to your company’s employees.  Crisis grief counseling will provide the employees with a safe place to talk about the loss, help them understand the normalcy of grief, provide them with information about the grieving process, and assess the need for additional referrals.  Contact me for more information. 

Help With Grief…

Grieving Well

Grief can be overwhelming and a roller coaster of emotions.  These emotions come in the form of shock, disbelief, anger, pain, sadness, loneliness, acceptance and back again.  For the most part, these are considered to be negative emotions that people try to avoid. While there are stages of grief that can help provide you with a road map, the stages are not always fluid or linear. In order to grieve well it is important for the individual to express the pain.  The tendency to “be strong”,  tuck the pain neatly away, or distract oneself from the pain, can be a hindrance to being able to “grieve well”.  Some things you can do In order to “grieve well” is to grieve openly and outwardy, grieve with others, cling to and rely on God and His promises, and exercise self-care. As you grieve well you can look forward to coming to a place of thankfulness for the time you had with your loved one and  smile at the memories you shared.

The Normalcy of Grief:

What makes grief normal is the fact that death is a part of everyone’s life, and it is inevitable. The bible is not silent about grief and grieving. God gives us life, yet it is appointed to man once to die… Grief was intended by God to be a natural response to loss. The Word of God talks about the sting of death.  Because of what Jesus Christ did for us on the cross, we have the reassurance that one day death will be swallowed up in victory  (I Corinthians 15:54,55 & 57). Yet the loss of someone we love deeply and dearly is still painful, and it is important to grieve our loss. For more information on how they grieved in the bible, click here.

The Gift of Pain:

Many people tend to run away from grief because of the pain that accompanies grief.  We are afraid that the pain will be unbearable, will last forever, or we will not be able to make it through.  As a result, the individual stuffs the pain, distracts themselves by staying busy, ignores the pain, and becomes stuck.  Emotional pain, like physical pain, is a sign that something is going on in us and needs to be addressed. We are being signaled by the emotional pain of the need to pay attention to, and take care of ourselves.  When we run from the pain, numb it, or become stuck, we forfeit the opportunity to respond to what our emotions are telling us about us… the opportunity to take care of ourselves, clean out the wounded place, and give expression to the pain.  We forfeit the opportunity to mourn, thus to heal. 

This might require that we slow down and become less active for a period of time.   Thus pain is a gift because it lets us know that there is a wound.  We then have the privilege of tending to the wound and expressing the pain through mourning, so that we can once again participate in life fully and unhindered.

What Makes Grief Harder:

In spite of grief being a normal experience, there are some things that make grief harder. Confusion about the grief process can foster an individual questioning whether or not they are grieving properly.  They question whether they are grieving too long, whether they are crying too much, or may think that they have to be strong for others.   Fear of feelings can also make grief harder.  When an individual has learned to protect themselves from their feelings due to fear of being overwhelmed by them, they will be less likely to give themselves permission to grieve.  They will be more susceptible to their automatic reactions of numbing the pain of grief in order to provide a false sense of protection from the hard feelings, which may result in becoming stuck.

Growing up we have been told many things about crying.  Our society perpetuates a myth that “big boys don’t cry”.  We have been taught and told things such as “stop crying”, “only babies cry”, “your weak if you cry”, or “I’ll give you something to cry for”.  When we are taught that not crying is preferable and is a sign of strength, as an adult we will continue this mindset of choosing not to cry and hold back the tears. Which in turn can make grief harder. 

Complicated grief – What makes grief complicated?

Certain situations and circumstances can complicate the grief experience.  Some of these include the unexpected or violent death of a loved one through homicide, suicide, or accident; the death of a child (young or adult), multiple deaths at one time or within a short period of time, lack of a support system, or a catastrophic event. These events can be traumatic and symptoms of trauma can pursue. With complicated grief the feeling of grief becomes intense and does not improve over time.  The person fails to come to a place of acceptance and peace after a period of time, and may experience depression, anxiety, or suicidal thoughts. When experiencing complicated grief, counseling, and/or medication may be warranted to assist the individual in navigation this.