Grief is a reaction to ANY form of loss. Typically people view significant loss as a death in the family or of a close friend, but there are many life changes and transitions which produce feelings of loss and grief. Changes in a relationship, life, health, job/school, or loss of financial stability can all produce feelings of loss and grief. What might be a significant loss to one person, could have little meaning to another person. The process of adapting to a significant loss may vary dramatically from one person to another.
We all grieve in our own way and in our own time. There is no “set” length of time for the grieving process. Some people recover from grief and resume normal activities in six months or so, though they continue to feel moments of sadness. Others may feel better after about a year, while some people continue to grieve for years without seeming to improve or find relief, even temporarily. Other conditions can complicate grief, most notably depression, or the person’s level of dependency on the departed.
Feelings of sadness, yearning, guilt, regret, and anger are usually associated with grief.
These are normal emotions that come with a significant loss, particularly the death of a loved one or the death of a relationship. It is only when these feelings are problematic and interfere with our daily functioning, that therapy may be indicated. Therapy is an effective way to learn to cope with the stressors associated with the loss and to manage symptoms. Therapy can assist the client in adjusting to the new reality of living without the presence of the loved one. This often requires developing a new routine, envisioning a new future, and even adopting a new sense of identity.
Group therapy can be quite helpful for those who find comfort in the presence of others who share similar experiences and feelings. This can ease feelings of isolation that can come when we experience a life changing event.
You can call or email me if you want to know more about this topic or if you want to schedule an appointment.