Grief and Loss Counseling
Are You Or Your Child Struggling With Painful Grief?
Have you recently suffered a loss, such as the death of a loved one, the loss of your job, the end of a close relationship or the death of your pet? Does your mind seem to race when you think about the loss you experienced? Is it difficult for you to get through the day without crying or feeling weighed down by sadness? Perhaps other painful emotions accompany your sadness, such as immense guilt or anger. Or maybe you have isolated yourself from your loved ones because you believe they will not understand your grief or don’t want to become an emotional burden. Do you wish you could respect and honor your loss while moving forward to live a fulfilling life?
Maybe your child or teenager has experienced a devastating loss and he or she seems stuck in the grieving process. Have you noticed a significant change in your child’s attitude or sleep patterns? Has your child recently started to struggle in school – whether with academics, extracurricular activities or friendships – and now you worry he or she cannot get back on a positive path? Perhaps your child has begun to isolate from family and friends and you fear that he or she is not getting the emotional support needed during this challenging time. Do you wish you could help your child overcome grief and learn tools to remain resilient?
Grief can take an emotional and physical toll on your well-being. You may wake up in the morning thinking about your loss and immediately feel unmotivated to start the day. No matter whether you are at home, at work, at school or simply running errands, the sights, sounds and events you encounter may seem surreal and trigger memories of your loss, causing you to feel sad, angry or hopeless. Or, instead of feeling pain, you may feel numb to your emotions, which can ultimately make you feel guilty or worried something is wrong with you. You may also have trouble sleeping because you are overwhelmed with memories or struggle with nightmares.
Feeling Consumed By Grief Is More Common Than You May Think
Most people are faced with the death of a close loved one at some time in their lives. And, with the rise of chronic illness, drug abuse and suicide, many individuals are faced with a loved one dying far too young. The elderly may be even more susceptible to overwhelming grief as they have experienced the death of so many family members and friends. In addition, our unpredictable job market has left many talented professionals unemployed and divorce rates are still hovering around 50 percent, making grief due to job and relationship losses increasingly common.
The high stress level of our culture can also add to the emotional weight of grief. Many adults and teens live fast-paced lifestyles that demand them to move on quickly without fully healing after a loss. For many children and teens, painful grief may be an entirely new experience, leaving them feeling confused, alone and lost.
Even though you may feel like grief is consuming you or your child’s life, there is hope for healing. Through grief counseling with an experienced and compassionate therapist, you can honor your loss and find lasting relief.
Process Emotions And Feel Supported With Grief Counseling
During safe and compassionate grief counseling sessions, you and your experienced Life Balance Counseling therapist will work together to understand how your loss has affected you. Most importantly, in sessions, you will not need to feel alone. Your therapist will support and guide you through your different emotional struggles.
You will have the opportunity to share your memories of the person, pet or thing you have lost in order to speak openly and lessen your painful grief symptoms. Your therapist will be respectful of your personal needs and work with you at a comfortable pace. Depending on your needs and therapy goals, your therapist may offer you individualized techniques during grief counseling sessions that can help you start accepting your loss.
If your grief stems from the death of a loved one, your therapist may ask you to write a letter to him or her or speak to him or her in an empty chair exercise. These techniques can help you resolve any lingering thoughts or feelings you may have about your deceased loved one. Other helpful strategies include creating a memory station and developing small rituals that help you remember the positive influence of your loved one.
No matter the type of loss you have struggled with, your therapist can help you modify some of the painful thoughts that surround your grief. For example, you may be blaming yourself for the loss you experienced. In this case, you and your therapist can break down your thought process to understand why you feel guilty. With help, you can reframe your thoughts and look at your situation from a different perspective. You can stop blaming yourself and move toward acceptance.
If your child is struggling with grief following a loss, his or her therapist will work with you along the way to help you ensure that you have the support and skills to help your child move forward. While your child’s sessions are confidential to a certain extent, your therapist can teach you ways to be involved in his or her healing.
The therapists at Life Balance Counseling have more than 20 years of combined experience in helping individuals find peace after experiencing loss. No matter the type of grief you or your child is experiencing, grief counseling can provide the necessary support and guidance to respect what you or your child have lost and move forward with resiliency.
I am interested in grief and loss counseling, but still have a few questions and concerns…
I don’t want to spend more time thinking or talking about my grief.
Your counseling sessions do not need to focus on the loss you have experienced initially. Because you may be currently overwhelmed with the emotions that result from thinking about your grief, you and your therapist can first establish a secure relationship in which you feel comfortable opening up. When you are ready to talk about the loss you experienced, your therapist will be there to guide you through a healthy grieving process.
Grief counseling sessions are not going to bring back my loved one. Why can’t I work through the grieving process by myself?
Even though our sessions cannot bring your loved one back to you, they can help you give new meaning to the relationship you had with him or her. This is something that you can do on your own, but often, the isolating experience of grief causes individuals to get stuck with negative thoughts and emotions surrounding the loss. Grief counseling sessions offer you a safe space where you can work with a professional in order to move on after your loss, while at the same time feeling connected to your deceased loved one.
I do not want to numb my feelings (or my child’s feelings) with medication.
At Life Balance Counseling, we do not prescribe medication. Instead, we rely on our proven holistic models of treatment. The techniques you or your child can learn during grief counseling sessions allow you or your child to harness your inner strength to move forward after experiencing a loss. While other therapists may be quick to prescribe medication, we believe that facing your sadness and learning how to mitigate your symptoms on your own can help you be more resilient in the future.
Overcome Painful Grief
If you are ready to get expert help so you or your child can feel at peace with a loss, we invite you to call us for a free 15-minute phone consultation. We’re happy to discuss your needs, our practice and how grief counseling can help.