Experiencing grief during difficult experiences is natural and healthy, but sometimes grief can become all-consuming and gravely interfere with a person’s ability to function in everyday life. Grief is often an underlying issue for people struggling with substance abuse and mental health disorders.
Grief counseling, or grief therapy, can take place in one-on-one counseling or in group therapy and can be effective for various types of losses. These may include death, divorce or relationship loss, miscarriage, inability to have a child, terminal illness in a loved one and job loss.
What to Expect in Grief and Loss Counseling
In grief therapy, a specially trained therapist helps clients address the complex emotions surrounding grief and loss. These may include feelings like regret, guilt, anger, sadness, relief, shock, denial, shame, numbness and despair. The therapist holds a nurturing, accepting space for clients to safely express emotions and learn to accept them without judgement.
Grief therapists have expert knowledge of attachment theories, bereavement counseling, family dynamics and trauma. They may draw upon a number of approaches such as role playing, cognitive behavioral therapy and trauma-focused therapies like EMDR to help clients overcome emotional blocks and move forward in the grieving process.
Benefits of Grief Counseling
Clients struggling with loss may have started abusing drugs, alcohol, food and/or sex in order to cope with the symptoms of grief. Grief therapy can help them understand why they’ve been using these substances or behaviors to deal with difficult emotions and recognize that they’re not serving them anymore. Clients learn healthier coping mechanisms they can draw upon to ease grief and loss.
Learning more effective ways to deal with grief and loss comprises a large part of grief counseling. Clients learn that overcoming grief and loss is a multi-stage process. We begin with small steps and then progress to others. Recognizing that healing from grief and loss takes time and is a normal part of healing helps in the overall return to normalcy.
To learn more about Grief Counseling, call 844-876-5568