Grief can overwhelm every aspect of our lives at any time, no more so than for those of us who have been bereaved during the Covid-19 crisis. During this time deaths have often been sudden and unexpected, and those facing loss do so under extraordinary circumstances with:
* limited contact with loved ones prior to their deaths
* little social support and mourning practices disrupted
* frontline NHS staff overwhelmed and traumatised with large numbers of patient deaths, feeling guilt and overwhelming grief at such loss of life.
Sometimes people are traumatised by what they have witnessed or by what they imagine has happened to their loved one, particularly if they don't know all the facts due to the circumstances of the death.
Bereavement is the time we spend adjusting to loss. There is no right or wrong way to feel during the bereavement period - everyone copes in their own way. Losing someone close to you brings waves of complicated emotions that may be totally overwhelming.
Bereavement counselling is designed to help you move through your bereavement and learn how to cope with the death of a loved one. Specifically, counselling for grief and bereavement can:
offer an understanding of the mourning process
explore areas that could potentially prevent you from moving on
help resolve areas of conflict still remaining
help you to adjust to a new sense of self
address possible issues of depression or suicidal thoughts
Bereavement support can offer you the space to express all your feelings as often as you need to. You can talk about the person or a situation you have seen or experienced. You might want to talk about what that person meant to you.
Bereavement counselling aims to help you arrive at a place where you can function normally, which might take a long time. However, with the right support you can find a way of piecing your life together, and find purpose while having continuing bonds with the person who has died.
Dip Couns, BSc, MBACP Accred