The Silent Pain of Loss: When Grief Counselling Can Help

The Silent Pain of Loss: When Grief Counselling Can Help

“If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” ~ George Berkeley. 

I witnessed a tree fall today. I heard the crashing sound first, and then saw it falling through the trees and shrubs before hitting the ground. We have lost a number of trees into the water at the back of our home. But unlike this tree they had laid there for days, weeks or even months before we noticed them.

As I watched the tree fall I was reminded of the quote above, and I thought of my clients who have experienced loss, and my own experiences of loss. You see grief, like those trees, can become a lonely and isolating experience when there is no one there to witness the pain. 

Let’s take a brief look at the impact of loss and when grief counselling might help:

THE GRIEF EXPERIENCE

Firstly, I am here to tell you that in the midst of grief you are likely to feel as if you are going crazy. You’re not, the chaos of grief is normal. 

When it first happens your grief comes in waves. Not little waves, huge waves that crash down on top of you. 

In the beginning they are unrelenting, leaving you gasping for air. Then the frequency of the waves lesson and you have the chance to catch your breath before the next one. And gradually the gap between each wave widens, and you have more moments where you feel normal.

There will still be times when a smell, image, sound, or pending anniversary will trigger your grief. But these will be more manageable and you will begin to notice whole days, weeks, months where you are not feeling swapped by sadness. 

However, if you become isolated during this process you can start to feel stuck in grief. Unable to go back and not able to move forward.

HERE’S WHY

Grief brings a mix of painful and often conflicting emotions, from guilt, anxiety and anger, to sadness and love. There can be a relentless stream of images and thoughts invading your days and nights. And a myriad of body sensations and problems exacerbated by tension and stress. You may be unable to stop crying or feel numb.

The problem is there can be a tendency to hold this all in or push it down, and put on a face for the sake of family, friends, colleagues, and the world at large. If this is you, then you are probably feeling exhausted from the effort to appear and feel normal. 

Instead, you need to download everything that is swirling around in your head. Its the story of what happened, how it happened, how it affected you, good and bad memories from before the loss, and concerns about your future. And you need to be able to do this without feeling judged or being given well-meaning advice, no matter how good it is. This will help you begin to process and make sense of what has happened, so you can begin to move forward with your life again.

HERE’S HOW

♥  Journaling

Kathleen Adams describes the pages of a journal as kind and patient. This is so true, you can say whatever you want, however you want . There is no need to edit your thoughts or emotions. They are what they are. You can click here to see Kathleen’s list of how you can use journaling to manage your grief.

♥  Talking to someone who cares

Sometimes we separate ourselves from the people who care about us most. So take a moment to consider the people in your world. 

♦ Who have you felt comfortable talking to in the past?

Do you have friends or family members who are good listeners

If so, do you trust this person, and are they empathic and genuine

Who have you been a confidant for in the past?

Remember everyone experiences grief in their life time. By talking about it you are giving this person permission to do the same when they need to reach out.

WHEN GRIEF COUNSELLING CAN HELP

Sometimes it isn’t possible to find the right person to talk to. Maybe the person you lost was also your best friend, the one you told everything to. It could also be that the people around you are struggling to come to terms with their own grief, and unable to relate to your experience. Or your circumstances have limited your access to supportive friendships in some way.

If this is you and journaling isn’t your thing then grief counselling can be a really good alternative. You may just need one session to debrief and clarify how you feel. Or you may benefit from more sessions. The key here is making sure you feel really comfortable with the therapist. Don’t just book in and hope for the best. Call them first to have a chat, you will know pretty quickly whether they are a good fit for you.  

No man or woman is an island, we all need support, inspiration and encouragement throughout our life journey. ~ Kerry Sutton 

 

Lets Talk

If you are feeling stuck in your grief and need support, then please call me for a Free 15 minute consultation. We can talk about what is going on for you and I can answer any questions you might have. If I am with a client I will get back to you as soon as I can.

or if you are ready to book now

Lets Talk

If you are feeling stuck in your grief and need support, then please call me for a Free 15 minute consultation. We can talk about what is going on for you and I can answer any questions you might have. If I am with a client I will get back to you as soon as I can. 

or if you are ready to book now

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