What is bereavement counselling and why you should try it?
When we were young, we were always told that death is simply part of the cycle of life. All of us will experience losing someone at some point and as human beings, grief and bereavement is a common reaction to this loss.
These feelings encompass a spectrum of emotions ranging from sadness to anger. A person’s reaction and behaviour to losing a loved one is always a unique experience. It can depend highly on the circumstance, their background, relationship to the person, and their belief. Nevertheless, a person mourning the death of someone they truly love and care for will really take time.
Bereaving is a very personal experience. If you have lost someone, whether a friend or a family member, you must remember that your heart and mind will have their own pace in healing. It is both a gradual and personal experience at the same time.
Counselling helps people recognize where they are in the grieving process, it can help by guiding them in coping with the loss.
Our Bereavement Counsellors will help clients in finding peace and answers through their grief and develop strengths to cope with the loss and with day-to-day living. Although mourning is a very personal experience and solely depends on a person, there are many common feelings and experiences every person feels when losing someone. Talking with our experts will enable clients to learn more about what their feeling, make sense of it all, and overall move on with the experience, whilst honouring the memory of their late friend/relative.
Coping With Loss
When experiencing the death of a loved one, it is completely normal to feel a range of emotions regardless of whether the death was expected or not. Most people experience a ‘numbness’ when hearing the news but, there is no real chronological order to the process of grieving.
Some emotions people commonly experience are confusion, shock, despair, guilt, denial, disbelief, anger, and yearning, to name a few. These feelings are natural and the length of time can vary significantly from person to person. Grief is something you cannot prepare for, as the reality is often very different once it happens to you, many people suggest the overwhelming intensity of the loss was a surprise to them, others suffer guilt that they were able to move on so quickly!
Grief may trigger a change in mental health and general mood. Just remember that it is healthy for you to feel these feelings since it will help come to terms with your loss.
People experiencing grief and bereavement may find themselves bouncing between these emotions in order to make sense of the situation. It can be calm and soothing (such as believing that your loved one lived a good life) or angry and regretful, like thinking that it wasn’t their time to go or they still had something to do in this world.
It is also common for people mourning the death of a loved one to feel some sort of responsibility. For example, people may blame themselves for the death, thinking that they could have prevented it if only they had done something.
Some people find it easier to grieve together with their family while some prefer to grieve alone and doing solo activities like exercising, computer games or nothing at all. It is often frustrating watching someone going about their daily business soon after the passing of a loved one – but please bear in mind, they are just trying to cope, and that maybe the outlet that they need.
There is no right way of grieving. What works for you may not work for someone else.
Some people have different coping mechanisms and it varies on how the person reacts to the loss. However, if you have trouble and feel like you need a helping hand to guide you in this process, call the team at What Do I Do, we are more than willing to help you through this painful phase of your life.
In an attempt to understand the complex process of grieving and bereavement, psychologists and professionals outlined models of grief based on the common patterns and traits shared by people experiencing grief.
Elizabeth Kubler-Ross in 1969 identified a five linear stage of grief which she named the following;
This model is used by Kubler-Ross to further illustrate the common stages experienced by a person in bereavement. She also noted that a person may revisit any certain stage at any point in their life throughout the years.
Margaret Stroebe and Hank Schut, on the other hand, developed an alternative process of grieving based on a dual process. In their model, they identified two processes associated with this feeling called loss-oriented activities and restoration-oriented activities.
Described as those that are closely related or directly related to the death. These activities include the following:-
- Experiencing anger, sadness, and other negative attitudes
- Longing for the deceased person’s presence
- Dwelling on the death
- Avoiding physical activities
On the other hand, restoration-oriented activities are directly associated with a person’s secondary lifestyle. These activities include:-
- Change in routine
- Developing brand new ways of connecting with loved ones
- Adapting and cultivating to a brand new way of life
Schut and Stroebe further noted that people will move back and forth from these two processes.
Bereaving Is An Emotional Support To Loss
Like it or not, losing someone is an integral part of life.
There are many ways you can ask help for grieving. This can be through your family priest, a bereavement specialist, psychologist, and even with family and friends.
A family priest or spiritual guide can help you spiritually in coping up with grief. Whenever we lose someone, we ask questions about life and death in general. People with strong spiritual beliefs may find it easier to talk with someone fluent in this like religious leaders and such. Following and undergoing spiritual rituals also helps in the grieving process. People who need answers and solutions may also go to a psychologist to help them make sense of things.
Talking to them and letting them know how you feel during this process proves to be also a really helpful solution. The same thing can be said to your friends and family who are more than willing to help and provide company and emotional support.
If you feel like this is too much for you to handle or you just want someone to talk to and make sense out of all of this, we have some of the best mental and emotional health professionals to guide you in this process.
We are here to help
Towards this process, it is best to keep in mind that you are never alone. No-one needs to suffer alone.
Contact us on email@example.com if you are finding it difficult to find the right resources to help you through.
* The opinions expressed in this article are the views of the author, and not necessarily the views of 'What Do I Do', its staff, or its partners. Information is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. 'What Do I Do' does not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained on this website. Users should seek appropriate independent professional advice prior to relying on or entering into any commitment based on material published here, which material is purely published for reference purposes alone.