Coping with the death of group members

Grief is a natural response to loss. It can be felt in many ways. Grief’s impact can be emotional, social, spiritual, physical and financial. It is as individual as the person you loved and lost. Grieving while living away from family and friends can be especially difficult. This is a place where you can share your thoughts, and get ideas on how to cope. It is here for you to get support and validation.

Coping with the death of group members

Postby kitkat5 » Tue Jun 30, 2015 7:48 am

When you become part of a bereavement support group, there can be a strong bond with other group members because of shared pain, heartache and sadness. You look for support and help and give back the same linking you to the group that nobody would choose to be part of---a grief support group. But you were brave enough to try the group and find it is more help than you thought it would or could be. You may help others more than you realize by a kind compliment, a warm smile or a word of encouragement. Good, healthy relationships are formed and hopefully group members feel they have a safe place to express their grief without fear of judgment, criticism or apathy. Then the unthinkable happens. One of the group members dies. You were already grieving about your loved one and now a bereaved person you cared about has died. What do you do with those feelings. First, acknowledge that it hurts and allow yourself to feel the grief. Secondly, find a way to express that grief in a safe and healthy way such as talking with others even within your group setting. Third, attend the service if you feel able to do so and reach out to the family of your group member. We know that we help ourselves when we are helping others. And lastly, continue the hard grief work you are doing related to your loved one while recognizing the grief you feel about the group member. It is natural and normal to grieve those who have come into our lives and are now gone whether it is family or friend.
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