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Complex Grief Counseling

Are You Struggling To Accept Life After Loss? 

Has the loss of a loved one or pet—either due to death or separation—left you with a debilitating sense of sadness? Has a heavy feeling of grief impacted your ability to function or move forward with your life? And are you worried that you will never recover? 

If the loss is recent, you may have trouble keeping up with your normal routine and accomplishing daily tasks. Perhaps all you can seem to do is cry or spend all day trying to avoid the reminders of your loved one.  

It’s also possible that you have developed symptoms of depression, such as lethargy or withdrawal, that are keeping you from engaging with others and the world around you. Maybe your grief has become so intense that you are beginning to think that life isn’t worth living, and perhaps you’re entertaining ideas of self-harm. 

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Deep down, you may struggle with the idea that you somehow contributed to the loss or didn’t do enough for the person you loved. As a result, you can’t stop blaming yourself and probably struggle with immense guilt and shame. 

A highly emotional reaction to the death of a loved one is entirely warranted. No pain can compare to that of loss. And even if the loss

was expected, the grief following it can be devastating. 

As you move through this painful time, though, it helps to have the perspective and support of a caring professional. And grief counseling at Rhapsody Behavioral Healthcare is the first step to healing. 

Grief Is A Natural Response To Loss

When we lose something or someone important to us, we have to reconcile with a huge void in our day-to-day routine. Grief shifts the everyday details of life in drastic ways, creating a whirlwind of emotions that is often overwhelming and unpredictable. It’s only natural, then, that we have deeply emotional responses to grief, which usually include any combination of sadness, anger, remorse, and loneliness. 

Though we typically define grief in the context of the death of a person, the truth is that grief is a response to the loss of any relationship or idea that was of great value to us. That means that grief also certainly applies to the loss of a pet, as well as to a job, dream, or home and is common at the outset of a chronic or terminal medical diagnosis. And of course, instances of divorce, separation, or a breakup can be tremendous losses as well. 

In the early stages of grief, it’s nearly impossible to imagine a future without what was lost. And it often takes a lot more time than we think to adjust to this new reality. In fact, a recent study shows that, at any given moment, 57 percent of Americans are grieving a loss that has occurred in the last three years—meaning that every other person you come into contact with is in a state of grief.[1] 

Grief and loss are painful but unavoidable and common parts of life. However, you don’t have to navigate your experience alone and in unrelenting pain. Counseling can provide you with the emotional support and coping techniques you need to heal from grief.  ​

Grief Counseling Can Help You Process Loss And Manage Your Pain 

Even though grief can be deep-seated and complex, there are evidence-based therapeutic treatments that can help you process and conquer your pain. At Rhapsody Behavioral Healthcare, our experienced and empathetic counselors take a client-centered approach to treating grief using tailored methods that help our clients to achieve peace and well-being. 

After you are matched with a grief counselor best suited to meet your needs, you will be invited into our warm and nonjudgmental therapeutic space where you can feel safe to explore your loss and your feelings. From there, we will begin a treatment process that draws from existential ideologies, behavioral therapies, and narrative approaches to help you adjust your response to the loss. 

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By first helping you to understand grief, loss, and their impact on the brain, we can empower you to normalize your experience of loss and understand why your emotions are intense and sometimes conflicting. From there, we will help you to establish meaningful coping mechanisms and tools that will allow you to manage painful emotions as they arise. 

As you begin to establish a new baseline of 

coping, you’ll be better suited to envision your future and find individualized and creative ways to honor what was lost. Elements of narrative therapy will allow you to take control of how you think about your past, present, and future in the context of your grief. And soon, you’ll have the tools and awareness to participate in what we call “restorative retelling,” which can enable you to recount the loss or death with a sense of control and agency. 

In the process, you’re likely to strengthen relationships with yourself and the people around you—especially those who can take an active role in recreating the narrative surrounding your grief. These relationships can help you to not only learn to live with reminders but to also commemorate what was lost. 

When grief is not effectively processed, it builds over time and becomes more complicated. Using our approach to bereavement counseling, however, you can effectively unpack your loss in a way that facilitates healing and relief. Your pain is not forever, and with therapy at Rhapsody Behavioral Healthcare, you can have new hope for a life after grief. 

Still not sure if grief counseling is right for you?

I thought counseling was only for the weak-minded and mentally ill.

Counseling is for anyone experiencing challenges navigating a rough patch. At several points in life, each of us will experience obstacles to our mental health—and there is no shame in that. The therapists at Rhapsody Behavioral Healthcare are prepared to help you process your grief and develop productive coping strategies for rebuilding your life after your loss. 

I can just talk to my friends or family about my problems.

The therapists at Rhapsody Behavioral Healthcare recognize that grief is an extremely personal experience. And while your friends and family can serve as an excellent support system, it is no substitute for the help you can get from a professionally trained and licensed psychotherapist. 

Your therapist will be a resource that belongs to you and can create space for your experience of grief without it being colored by the expectations or obligations that often come with personal relationships. Plus, you never have to worry that your therapist will tire of your emotions. They are here to make room for your pain and help you work through it in your own way and at your own pace, tailoring treatment to meet your needs along the way.

I’m interested in being treated for co-occurring disorders that are the result of my grief. 

You are more than welcome to include other health professionals in your treatment, and our grief counselors can help you find excellent resources for dealing with other mental health challenges related to grief. If you meet the criteria for depression, anxiety, and/or a substance abuse disorder as a result of your grief, we can work with your doctor or other support systems to enlist additional interventions or medication to complement our counseling sessions. 

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You Can Learn To Look Forward With Hope While Still Honoring Your Loss

If you continue to struggle with debilitating sadness after a loss, grief counseling at Rhapsody Behavioral Healthcare can help you to build a toolbox for coping. Contact us for a free, 15-minute consultation or to schedule an appointment for an intake session. We are here to help!

 

[1] https://www.webmd.com/special-reports/grief-stages/20190711/the-grief-experience-survey-shows-its-complicated