Are You Considering Grief Counseling?

  • Has the passing of a loved one left you wondering whether you will ever be able to feel whole again?

  • Do you feel as though your life is forever changed?

  • Are you having a hard time coping with the loss of a miscarriage, close friend or pet?

  • Perhaps you are questioning your identity or sense of purpose after experiencing infidelity, going through a divorce, or losing a job.

  • Maybe a medical diagnosis or injury has changed the way you live and your perspective on life and you want help accepting change and coming to terms with a new reality.

If any of this sounds familiar, it’s likely that you are experiencing  intense or overwhelming emotions that you may struggle to manage. Persistent grief and sadness, longing and uncertainty can feel overwhelming.  Distress over a loss can be powerful, making it impossible to focus, thus disrupting your life so that ordinary tasks and decisions become impossible. Dealing with a loss can be even more difficult when it seems the rest of the world goes on — seemingly indifferent to your loss — which may leave you feeling isolated and alone. You may believe the pain will never subside — that it’s something you’ll have to bear forever and the future holds little hope.

But, there is hope, and healing is possible. Regardless of your situation, I can help you process the pain of your loss and help you integrate the memory of your loved one into your life in a positive and healing manner. In time, you can remember and honor your loved one in a way that brings you peace.


Loss Is a Part of Human Nature

Losing a loved one or experiencing a difficult life change is an inevitable part of the human condition. The fact that we are mere mortals is never so clear as when we lose someone dear to us. The grief and sadness that accompanies loss is integral to the healing process.

However, when the sadness turns into persistent heartbreak or distress it may impact your day-to- day life, making it difficult to function and challenging to navigate without support.

Loss, particularly that of a loved one, can be a traumatic event that distorts your perception of reality, challenges your sense of identity and creates real, physical pain. The truth is, as humans, we simply are not hardwired to handle loss without being greatly affected by it. No matter how strong or resilient we are as individuals, loss can truly be a traumatic experience.

Although there is no one right way to grieve, it is an absolutely necessary step in the healing process. Denying ourselves the right to grieve only perpetuates the suffering. Ultimately, it keeps us from enjoying our loved one’s memory and honoring their life.

The healing begins when we can integrate the memory and meaning of what was lost into our lives without experiencing the loss all over again. Fortunately, with the help of a compassionate grief counselor, you can learn to embrace the memory of your loved one with comfort and joy.


How Can Grief Counseling Help Me?

Therapy offers you a supportive space to speak your pain—to tell your story in the gentle presence of a caring professional. It gives you a chance to process complex emotions and have your fears and concerns validated. I am here to serve as a witness to your grief and to help you establish a healthy relationship with loss so that your memories can enrich your life.

You will always have control over the pace of our sessions. I’m here to make space for your story—to understand and validate your loss. I want to know what your loved one meant to you. How does their absence make you feel? What qualities did you love most about them? What impact will they forever have on your life?

By recognizing and highlighting what your loved one meant to you, we can begin to gently integrate their memory back into your life. In time, you can overcome the longing and pain and instead, reflect calmly and contently on your shared past.

There is no one cause of grief and it is not something to be fixed. It’s a process of acceptance and reflection that can be different for everyone. But, regardless of your situation, I am humbled to be a part of your journey to  help you gain closure and peace of mind. Whether you are grieving a loved one, a relationship or a pet that was like a close friend, I can help you understand and eventually resolve your pain.

What Would Grief Counseling be Like?

In some cases, I may use visualization  exercises to help you express emotions and thoughts that you weren’t able to before your loss. However, the real power of counseling is in having someone listen to your story. Therapy won’t erase the memory of that person or relationship but instead, it will lighten the weight of your loss so you can begin cherishing that memory again.

I understand that you are probably adrift in a sea of emotions, but healing is possible. And even though it may not seem like it right now, you can come out of this stronger than you were before. Grief counseling offers a transformative experience that can change your appreciation for life, enhance your relationships and allow you to honor the memory of your loved one with grace and gratitude.

I am considering grief therapy, but I still have some concerns…

My friends and family are my support group.

It’s wonderful that you have this support in your life. Family members and friends can provide an essential role in healing. However, they may not always be equipped to provide relief, especially because seeing you in pain is, ultimately, painful for them. And, if they share your loss, it may be difficult for them to see through their own grief to help.

Grief and loss counseling gives you a space to be vulnerable and open, without censoring your emotions or tending to the feelings of others. It gives you an impartial ally, who can bear your pain and offer compassionate guidance for as long as you need.

I afraid that grief counseling would be too painful.

Pain and sadness thrive in the darkness when they go unaddressed or ignored. When you bring your pain into the light by narrating it and giving it a voice, you then promote healing. The pain lessens,  along with intense emotions and you begin to feel strong and more like yourself again.

Witnessing your own loss begins a healing process that creates a certain ease and lightness. Over time, as you  integrate the memory of your loved one into your life, that light can fill you, illuminating the way to your place in the world again.

You may think that grief counseling can’t change anything.

Counseling is about more than just talking. It’s about reframing memories of a person to reflect the impact they made in your life. Counseling involves identifying and drawing upon your internal strengths and resilience. It’s about understanding and acknowledging the enduring influence that your loved one will have on your life.

Counseling can’t turn back time. But, with help, you can embrace the joy and gifts found in your relationship with your loved one. You can honor their life and memory and step into a new sense of peace.

Grief therapy can help you realize that life after loss is possible

If you are struggling to overcome a personal loss, I encourage you to set up your free, 20-minute phone consult. Contact me by clicking here. I would be honored to answer any questions or concerns you may have about my practice or approach to grief counseling or what I can do to help.

Cathy Austin

Inspired by Hope Counseling, LLC

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