Madelyn – Holding space
Madelyn explains how holding space can help anyone in grief
Madelyn – Rituals and the Chinese grieving process
Madelyn talks about expressing your grief in Chinese cultures and how rituals are a war of grieving providing comfort
Post by Maureen Pollard, MSW, RSW
When Grief Therapy Can Help
Death is a natural part of life, and grief is a natural response to the death of a loved one. It makes sense that we might be able to move independently through the experience of grief as we adapt to the reality of life after loss. Sometimes, all we need is the gentle understanding and acceptance of those in our circles as we adjust to the absence of a loved one.
There are times when grief feels overwhelming, and begins to interfere with our ability to function. We can be caught in painful patterns of grief that are beyond the support our family and friends can offer us. Some signs that we might benefit from professional help include:
Suicidal thoughts. If you’re actively thinking about suicide, with a plan to die, please call a crisis line to talk with someone who understands and can give you the non-judgmental support you need when your loved ones are too worried to remain calm as you express your thoughts and feelings to work through them.
On-going, uncontrollable symptoms of distress including crying, insomnia, irritability, panic attacks or depression. These symptoms are all very common in grief, especially in the early days and weeks after a loss. As you adjust to the absence of your loved one, you should find that these symptoms decrease. Counselling can help if they continue, and if they interfere with your ability to work or take part in typical activities such as grocery shopping.
You’re relying on substances like drugs or alcohol to help you avoid your thoughts and feelings. This behaviour can cause additional difficulties with your health and your ability to function in life, and while it’s a common coping mechanism it can quickly escalate with negative consequences.
You don’t have family or friends who are able or willing to support you. It may be that you’re alone in the world after your loved one has died. Alternatively, it may be that the people in your life can’t support you in the ways you need. Maybe they don’t understand, or maybe they are too deep in their own grief.
You blame yourself, or you’re experiencing intrusive thoughts of reliving your loved one’s death. These symptoms of grief are associated with trauma and can benefit from professional support in your recovery.
Remember that while it’s natural to grieve, and grieving takes time, if you find yourself experiencing some of these more difficult situations as you try to cope with the loss of a loved one, there is help available. You can find supportive grief therapy that works for you through a referral by family and friends, your doctor or an internet search for grief therapy in your geographic region. Your grief has a real impact and you’re worthy of good support.
Amber -Helping someone who is grieving
Amber talks about how her grief has helped her learn how support other people in grief.
Amber – Support
Amber talks about following through on offers of support
Amber – Talking about death
Amber explains why it’s so important to talk about grief and her kids
Adrianna – Pandemic, funerals and celebration of life
Adrianna talks about the death of her friend during pandemic
Adrianna – Storytelling… intuitive and instrumental
Adrianna tells how storytelling helped her process her grief