Grief counseling helps people grieve difficult losses including the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, or the end of a relationship. It helps people navigate their grief process and eventually accept, understand, and move forward from their loss. Grief counselors have specific experience, training, and skills that enable them to best-support grieving individuals.
Grief counseling isn't one-size-fits-all, but it involves sharing about your loss and then working with your counselor to acknowledge and accept your new reality in its wake. Your Thriveworks grief counselor will design your treatment plan around your unique needs and goals for therapy, applying the counseling techniques that best support them. It may take place as individual-counseling or a form of group therapy such as Family therapy.
For many, grief counseling lasts for about 6 months. For others, it may last shorter or longer, depending on the severity of their loss and their grief.
Losing a loved one is never easy. We know that it can happen but it isn’t something that we are ever really prepared for. We don’t really think about loss until it happens to us. When it does, we feel the overwhelming waves of emotion. It is difficult. It is painful. It can be confusing. The counselors of Austin Grief Counseling want to eliminate some of the confusion and help you understand the process of grief and loss
Understanding the Facets of Grief
You’ve probably heard the words “grief”, “bereavement”, “mourning” and “loss” used to describe the death of a loved one. While they are often used interchangeably and can overlap, they are different.
- Grief is the term used to describe the overall way we experience of a loss – emotionally, physically, cognitively, socially and spiritually.
- Bereavement is the objective state of having lost a loved one
- Mourning is the “how” of grief – practices or rituals associated with how loss is expressed
- Loss is the actual losing of someone or something. The loss may be of a loved one, a beloved pet, a relationship or significant life change.
Grieving – What’s Normal and What You Can Expect?
There is no right or wrong way to grieve. There is no set amount of time. Grieving is a deeply personal experience. Healthy grieving tends to follow a predictable pattern. Each stage moves the person through an important part of the process and towards a place of peace and acceptance.
- Denial & Shock – This is usually the first reaction to loss. “This can’t be happening.” Feeling overwhelmed, numb, withdrawn
- Anger – Blaming self or others for the loss
- Bargaining – Seeking a way to avoid the loss from happening. It is the expression of hope that the situation is still reversible.
- Depression – Reality begins to set in. Feelings of intense sadness, hopelessness and helplessness emerge.
- Acceptance – The reality of the situation is acknowledged and the focus becomes on moving forward.
People experience all of the stages but not always in order. They may spend more time on one than another. They may break the pattern and go back and forth many times before coming to a place of acceptance.
How Can Counseling Help?
Sometimes no matter how hard you try, you just can’t get past those intense feelings. Grief can become overwhelming and distressing, making it difficult to move forward. When this happens, counseling can help. Counseling can help you begin the healing process and learn effective ways to cope with the emotions and stress associated with loss.
At Austin Grief Counseling, we understand how difficult a loss can be. We have experienced counselors who are ready to help. If you or a loved one are struggling with a loss, you don’t have to go through it alone. We can help. Call us today to schedule your confidential appointment.