Bereavement & Loss
We can help you try to make more sense of your loss, to ground yourself and find some emotional stability.
Loss affects us all differently, so there's no set pathway. But we have worked with many, many people who have suffered bereavement and loss.
Please get in touch with us and we can explore in advance and without commitment, how we might map out a programme or pathway which could work for you.
In the meantime, the following may offer you some basic tips...
Reproduced (with permission and thanks) from 'The Crisis Book';
Any form of loss can be painful, which includes anything from ending a relationship or losing a job to the death of someone close to us. The process of grieving can take time, from a year to a lifetime, but everyone’s different and so are the circumstances. What is universal is that the pain hurts.
Grieving is not just about one feeling, but a whole succession of feelings, and the sequence in which we experience them is often unique. Some of us go through each stage sequentially, while others dot around or can get stuck in a certain stage.
The Stages Of Bereavement
Shock – Numbness and Denial
Immediately after the death or loss, you’ll experience a sense of shock, not really believing it’s happened to you. After the initial shock, you probably won’t believe it, denying what’s happened.
Anger – Resentment and Aggression
Anger is a normal response to loss. It’s part of the grieving process. You might find yourself angry at people around you, your family, medical doctor or hospital (“Why couldn’t more have been done?”). You’ll want to blame people, maybe yourself or (and this is surprisingly common) feel angry at the person who’s died (“How could you do this to me?”).
Sorrow – Despair and Guilt
This can be a gut-wrenching stage when, after the funeral or memorial service and the well-wishers have disappeared, you realize that “this is it”, that you have to adapt to a new life without the person. You may feel some sense of guilt too (“I wish I’d seen them more or been a better person to them”).
Depression – Apathy and Disconnection
After the initial raw feelings of pain have subsided, you may find yourself feeling pretty down, a sort of depression. This is normal. You probably won’t feel very sociable or be bothered to do anything. As some time might have passed now, friends might have stopped checking to see if you’re OK. You may feel a sense of being on your own with it all. But grieving takes time.
Acceptance – Revival and Reconnection
You know you’ve moved on when you start to get out more, get energy or enthusiasm back, and reconnect with people and life in general. You still remember the person, but without the really debilitating feelings you had at the start. This isn’t a fixed point and you may still have bad days when triggers bring back situations and memories. But in time, these memories will become less sad and perhaps tinged with a happy reflection of the good times you had with the person.
Transformation – Growth and Enlightenment
This is not a stage everyone experiences, so don’t expect it. But some people find that after the trauma of loss, they find a change in something about themselves – their values, a different perspective on life, more meaning or a change in their belief system. This can feel like a positive that has emerged from a negative. Life can be strange.
Self-care is vital. Be good to yourself. Look after yourself. Eat well, exercise, try to have a decent amount of sleep and tentatively engage with other people. Avoid using alcohol as a mood enhancer.
It’s good to talk. You may want some space to be on our own, and that’s fine. But sometimes you may need to express what you’re feeling. The key is finding the “right people to talk to” – a friend or family member, or perhaps someone objective like a therapist.
Things will get better in time.