Nothing is more natural than grief– it’s an innate response to loss in a world where everything is impermanent. –Steven Levine
Whether you’ve lost a parent, child, spouse, friend, or beloved pet, all grief has one thing in common: it hurts. And it often feels unbearable. You may feel that your emotions have “frozen” in order to function in daily living. You may feel that the support you once received from those around you, while helpful at the time, started to wane once some time had passed. You may even feel that a recent loss triggers past losses and you feel overwhelmed as a result. Whatever your experience with grief and loss is, therapy can help.
One of the most common question asked by bereaved clients is, “Am I doing this right?” In our experience, grief is not a linear process and there is no specific timeline – it’s different for everyone. For some, grief is a shorter process, like several months, and for others grief can take years. Each relationship and each person is different.
With that said, there are several stages of grief that Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross has identified: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. These stages, however, are not meant to be cookie cutter—in fact, most people do not follow the stages in order and some don’t even go through all five stages. Others may go back and forth between several stages. My goal is to help you find compassion for yourself and not to compare yourself to others going through this process. Like a snowflake, grief is unique to the individual.
While it is a hard task master, grief is also one of the greatest teachers in this life. From the wounds of grief spring wisdom and enlightenment and what is lost comes back in higher ways.
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