Grief & Loss
Losing someone or something you love is very painful. Yet, everyone experiences loss at some time in their life. After a significant loss, you may experience many difficult emotions, such as shock, disbelief, anger, guilt, and overwhelming sadness. You may also feel confused and disoriented. Your energy may be low. You may be tearful; or you may even feel “beyond tears,” as if you are in too much pain to even cry. It may feel as if life will never return to normal, and you cannot imagine ever being happy, hopeful, or content again.
While feelings of grief can be overwhelming and even frightening, these are usually normal reactions to loss. Some losses are devastating and life changing. We feel such losses as a deep wound within us. Healing from these losses can take many months – even years. To heal from the deep wounds of an important loss, we must move through a difficult, painful grief process.
To make things worse, people often deny or minimize their losses, telling themselves to “be strong” and to “stop feeling sorry for myself.” We often do not realize that we must grieve all types of losses in life – not just the major losses such as death of a loved one, divorce, or the break-up of an important relationship. Grief can also result from the loss of a job; the death of a pet; leaving a neighborhood or a group of friends; sending a child off to college; or ending an important phase in life. Any change involves loss. Even if the change is a positive one, we must still go through the process of letting go of the past, and saying good-bye to the situation or the person we are releasing.
Some losses are so painful and private that we may be reluctant or unwilling to lean on friends or family members, and so we keep our grief locked inside ourselves, enduring our pain silently and unable to get the support we need to work through it. This may be true if you are coping with miscarriage or infertility.
Grieving is a natural, though difficult, response to a major loss. The grieving process helps us:
Acknowledge and accept our loss
· Tend to our emotional wounds with compassion
· Learn to live without the lost person or lost situation
· Understand the loss – and understand how the loss has changed us
· Emotionally release the lost person or situation – or create a new, different type of relationship with the lost person
· Make room in our lives for new relationships and new opportunities if we choose
As a normal part of life, grief usually runs its own course, and we are able to return to our daily routine and a balanced emotional state in due time without professional help. However, grief is sometimes complicated by various internal or external factors, and we may get “stuck” or depressed, unable to move beyond sadness, guilt, confusion, hopelessness, or despair. If this has happened to you, we can provide you with a safe, supportive environment for your healing journey, and help you begin moving through your grief.
If the sadness and low energy of grief are already making it difficult for you to meet your daily responsibilities, you may be reluctant to add another commitment such as therapy to your schedule. Please remember that counseling can help you feel better very quickly. The opportunity to explore your loss with a caring, knowledgeable counselor can provide you with the support you need to begin your healing process.
Please call us at (239) 997-1695 or email us at [email protected] to schedule an appointment. We can begin by talking about the loss you are coping with, and how it is affecting your daily life and your emotional functioning. We provide a safe, supportive, caring environment for you to grieve and to begin your journey toward healing.