Grief happens……As a grief and loss counselor I have seen the transformative power of being a member of a grief support group. Sometimes people think that coming to a group means that they may sit in a circle hearing the sad stories of other people, which will make them feel possibly even more sad. While some of this is true (for effective communication and logistics I do ask that we form somewhat of a circle), here are some positive things that people have told me about being part of our support group:
- “Everyone there “gets” it.” Being with other people who understand the pain of loss brings a sense of comfort and the responsibility and energy it takes to explain exactly how you’re feeling is eliminated.
- “I’m not going crazy after all.” Grief has a weird way of making you feel lost, disorganized, unfocused and inadequate. Hearing that others may be experiencing similar feelings helps to normalize what you may be thinking and feeling.
- “I can’t believe that I could laugh at a grief support group.” Yes, there are typically shared tears but shared laughter also happens. The best way that I can describe it is as a beautiful balance of two emotions that are necessary for our healing.
- “If I don’t want to talk, I don’t have to.” Sometimes we are so paralyzed by our pain that we find it hard to speak and share. You have the freedom to just come and listen if that’s what you need.
- “I found HOPE.” You may hear one little thing that someone else shares about their grief experience that makes a big impact on you. It’s helpful to have people in a group at all different stages of the grieving process-wherever you may be in the process, there is always something to learn and apply to your situation or some insight to be gained.
If you or someone you know would like to find out more about “Grief Happens,” contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 240.298.2442. Our next group meets on Wednesday, April 26th from 6:30-8:00 pm.