Grief & Loss Counselling

Understanding Grief and Loss


Grief & Loss Counselling is designed to support you and your family with an understanding of the trauma you face and options that are available to you.   Everybody grieves in their own way. There is no right or wrong way to do it, and no timeline on how long you will be grieving for.

You may be able to deal with your grief with the help of family and friends, or you may need some extra help.  Regardless, it is important that you find what you need and give yourself time to heal.

What is Grief?

Grief is a normal, natural response that follows a significant change or loss which may affect parts, or all, of someone’s life. Grief is a process of coming to terms with what has changed in life.

When people grieve, they are coming to terms with what has changed in their lives. Grief can also be delayed and not surface until some time after a loss has occurred.

Different Types of Loss

Grief can follow the loss of a loved one, home, pet, possession or livelihood. It can also follow a change in circumstances such as moving house, relationship breakdown or having your children move out.

Each person’s grief is unique, and they will grieve in a way that is right for them, regardless of the type of loss involved.

Signs of Grief

Some people are open and expressive with their grief, for example crying, and wanting to talk, while others are more private, and may be reluctant to talk preferring to keep busy.

A grieving person may experience intense thoughts and feelings such as sadness, anger, fear, anxiety, disbelief, panic, relief, shame and nostalgia.

Grief can include both physical and emotional distress. Signs of distress can include:

  • crying and sadness (or a reluctance to cry)
  • feeling numb
  • difficulty sleeping and having nightmares
  • constantly feeling tired and depressed
  • changes to eating habits
  • difficulty concentrating and making decisions
  • feeling tense, sick and having difficulty breathing
  • losing interest in family, friends and hobbies
  • disorientation and confusion.

Although grief can be very painful, most people find that with the support of their family and friends and their own resources they gradually find ways to learn to live with their loss.

How to Cope With Grief and Loss

Dealing with grief and loss is different for everyone-you may want to cry, be alone or want to yell. Some people do not show their grief in public, expressing it only in private.

Grieving can also be hard work. It is a time to reach out to others for comfort and encouragement as you allow yourself the time to mourn. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.

To help you get through a difficult time:

  • accept that your feelings (both physical and emotional) are normal and valid
  • allow yourself time and space to express your feelings and to grieve-crying is a good release of emotions
  • talk about what you are going through with friends and family, even if you just need them to listen
  • be patient with yourself-you will have good days and bad days
  • try to keep your life as normal as possible and keep doing the things that you have always enjoyed
  • allow friends and family to help you with everyday tasks
  • ensure you rest, have some light daily exercise and eat a healthy diet
  • don’t make any major decisions, as your ability to do so may be compromised by your grief
  • if you have lost someone close to you, remember that they will always be part of your life-cherish their memory and celebrate their life
  • take the time you need to grieve-there is no time limit.

Although grief can be very painful, most people find that with the support of their family and friends and their own resources they gradually find ways to learn to live with their loss.

 Helping Someone Else Deal With Grief

You do not always know people are grieving simply by what you see.

The most important thing to do is to make sure your friend or relative knows that you care and are willing to help. Sometimes just listening is the best support you can give.

People who are grieving will not necessarily know what will help them, so offer support in different ways and at different times.

If your friend or relative wants to talk-even about the same thing over and over again-make opportunities for this, but don’t expect it. There will be times for talking and times not to talk.

You don’t have to rely on words; if appropriate, a squeeze of the hand, a touch on the shoulder or an embrace is sometimes more comforting. If you think it will help, you can also share some memories with them.

Offering some practical support is another way you can help, but don’t be offended if they decline. Remember, everyone grieves differently.

Get in touch now to get help for you or your family in dealing with grief and loss.

Let us call you

You are important to us. We know you are busy, so are we helping clients. If you would please leave your details, one of our Counsellors will get back to you to discuss your needs and see whether we are the right people for you.

Contact Details

Peninsula Wellbeing Counselling

3/15 Bay Rd
Mt Martha
Vic 3934

Postal address:
PO Box 2136
Mornington VIC 3931

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