The Many Benefits of Grief Counseling Groups
Grief is an incredibly powerful emotion that can disrupt your life and cause a variety of cascading issues. Grief counseling groups are a great way to begin to explore grief and the many ways one can cope with loss. Here’s what they can do for you.
Benefits of Group Grief Counseling
Validate Your Experience
Seeing that you aren’t alone in your grief is more than just helpful at staving off loneliness and alienation. Grieving can make you feel “wrong.” Many people worry that they’re grieving incorrectly. Am I being too emotional? Am I not emotional enough? There are a million ways you might doubt yourself while reckoning with loss. Seeing that other people are experiencing similar confusion, heartache, and self doubt can help remind you that you’re not abnormal. Even if you aren’t feeling the exact same way as someone else, your feelings are valid. They’re normal, and they’re warranted by the immense loss you experienced. It might not sound like much, but feeling “allowed” to grieve can go a long way.
Avoid Common Grief Pitfalls
A person who is grieving may feel a variety of complex emotions that they can’t explain to others. As a result, many grieving individuals withdraw from social situations because it’s simpler. You may feel disconnected from others because of your grief. You may be afraid to make new connections for fear of losing another person. This is all perfectly normal when grieving, but it’s not healthy to let these feelings develop. A grief counseling group is a way to force yourself to interact with other people. While that may sound daunting, it’s the first step in a long path toward healthily living with grief. Forming new connections with people is important to overcoming the sometimes crippling loneliness that grief causes. Maybe group counseling is just a way to get out of the house – a break in the boredom you’ve been feeling. This is common with grief and depression. Whatever reason you need to motivate yourself, getting over the initial trepidation of group therapy for grief is crucial. Seeing people in a group setting who are at different levels of coping with grief is also important. It’s very normal to feel hopeless when you’re grieving—to feel like there is no way to feel happy again. If you can expose yourself to people who are further along in the path, you may gain some hope. Knowing that others have been in your position and have found success in group counseling can be just the thing you need to get started and stick with it.
Learn from Others
Gaining new coping strategies can be difficult. Reading about them can only do so much, and sometimes hearing them from a therapist can feel less than productive. Does your therapist really understand your loss? While therapists are of course incredibly experienced in giving counsel to grieving individuals, you may have some trepidation. It can be alienating to grieve, as we’ve discussed. For that reason, group therapy can be very beneficial. You can hear how others cope with their grief. You can compare your personality to others and find what may work for you or learn about what didn’t work for someone. There is no wrong way to grieve, and figuring out the best trajectory for yourself is a constant learning experience. With others present, you may find that their experiences inform your own. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You are all working toward a common goal.
Grieving loss can be an incredibly heavy burden to bear alone, but you don’t have to do it on your own. Want to learn more about group therapy in the Denver area? Call The Collective today for a consultation.