Bergen Alliance Counseling Services LLC
Grief is a process not an "Illness", at Bergen Alliance we work with individuals and families who are going through the process of grief. We also offer groups that individuals can join to share with others going through loss. It can be extremely helpful sharing with others who actually know what you are going through and who are also dealing with some form of loss. Our goal is to provide a safe and supportive environment for people who are grieving the death of a significant other, illness, or tragic event. We specialize in working with those affected by some form of a devastating loss. Our goal is to facilitate healing and improve coping by offering emotional support, education and guidance through each individual or families journey.
Grief and how to deal with it depends on who is affected by it and why. Anyone trying to cope with grief often feels alone and isolates from others. They feel that no one understands their pain and that nothing that is said to them actually helps. Every individual will deal with grief in their own personal way. There is no right or wrong way to deal with grief; the important thing is to go through the process and to come out the other side. Grief is a process that allows us to accept whatever has happened and to get to a place where you can move on and forward. Quite often depression associated with grief is not a clinical depression, but a natural process of bereavement and mourning. All the emotions attached to this depression must be experienced in order to heal and recover our normal self and awareness. The feelings of pain, loss, grief, sadness, arrive in different orders or severity. Every individual does not process emotions in the same way; it depends on their support system, their beliefs, and how they process pain.
There are 5 known stages of grief that most individuals go through when they are grieving.
. Denial: This starts out as disbelief and shock regarding what has happened. Following a loss, it is easier not to believe than to accept the loss has actually occurred. The sense of disbelief occurs in the thought that the loved one will never be seen again. After the shock, we start asking questions, such as why did this happen, how did this happen, and could it have been prevented. At this point we understand that what happened did happen and we start to understand the facts.
. Anger: This is the stage when a person is most likely to act impulsively, hurt themselves, drink, or take unnecessary risks. The person may be angry at family, friends, and the person they lost.
. Bargaining: This stage keeps the focus on the past to avoid the feelings in the present. Individuals quite often turn to religion at this stage and they may accept that their loved one went to a better place. Individuals look for a soothing reason to be okay with the loss.
.Depression: Eventually grief will enter a deeper level with intense feelings of emptiness, loss, and fear. This part of the grieving process can last several weeks, months, and in some cases years. Individuals quite often will withdraw, sleep a lot, and have a loss in appetite. They quite often do not have the energy to do anything, go anywhere, or distract themselves from the pain.
Acceptance: Once we have gone through the sadness and depression associated with our bereavement, we can start to accept what has happened and slowly start to move on with life in the present. The emptiness and loss never truly goes away, but individuals learn how to live their lives in spite of the loss. There are often periods of a trigger, which can bring back the depression or anger.