No matter your age, losing a parent can be a life shattering experience. This article is geared towards those who had a close relationship with a parent that passed away. If you were extremely close to your parent, it may feel almost impossible to imagine your life without them. Depending on your family beliefs, you may hold a wake / funeral which includes making arrangements in a very short period of time. All of this in and of itself can feel incredibly overwhelming. So how can you move forward with life after this loss?
First Steps for Moving On After Parent Loss
First things first, you will need time. Time won’t make your loss any less painful but the intensity and impact of that loss typically lessens the further removed you are from an event. Within the first couple months of losing a parent, whether it was unexpected or expected, you will likely have a difficult time. Simple day to day tasks such as basic hygiene or feeding yourself may feel astronomically more difficult. Grief, known as ‘ the process of managing your loss’ is messy.
If you’re able to reach out to a support system or if you aren’t the only one affected by this loss, reaching out and sharing your current experiences (feelings, struggles, really anything) can help in beginning to grieve your loss. After a month or two, it may be helpful to seek a therapist for additional support. There is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to grieve. However, seeking professional help can assist in providing you with effective support.
What Is Grief Therapy?
What does grief therapy look like? That is dependent on where you are in the grief process. Grief Therapy can take many different forms since grief in and of itself is a complicated and multifaceted emotion. The focus in your grief therapy should be on meeting you where you are at, in that moment. That may include education about the stages of grief (Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance) or providing you with a safe non judgemental space to share your story.
Starting from where you are in Grief Therapy simply means gaining a better understanding of your situation in relation to your loved one passing away. How has your loss impacted you? Are you struggling to complete simple human tasks? If so, therapy can help provide resources to assist in taking care of your needs at that time.
Different Approaches to Grief Therapy
Maybe you would like support in processing the event or loss itself. There are several ways to approach this. Narrative Therapy is one of many approaches allowing you to begin memorializing your parents’ life. This happens through the stories you share about them as well as how you can continue to honor them.
If you have had some time to process the event, support groups can be an excellent way to not only receive compassion and support from fellow members but to share your experiences with others who are in a similar situation. If you decide you want to do a grief support group, there is no obligation to share or participate, but it is encouraged.
Grief Therapy with Catalyss Counseling
Catalyss Counseling offers Individual Grief Therapy as well as various Support Groups. We strive to provide you with tools for these situations aimed at decreasing the overall impact that your loss has in your life.
In conclusion, losing a parent is an incredibly difficult experience that a lot of us may confront in our lifetimes. Receiving effective Grief Therapy can help in your healing journey, click here to make an appointment with one of our caring therapists.
How We Can Help
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For those who are struggling with a significant loss in their life and would like to work through managing the grief.
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Other Therapy Services Available at Catalyss Counseling:
Here at Catalyss Counseling, we want to meet all of your counseling needs in the Denver area. Our supportive therapists provide depression counseling, therapy for caregiver stress, grief and loss therapy, stress management counseling and more. We also have specialists in trauma and PTSD, women's issues, pregnancy and postpartum depression or anxiety, pregnancy loss and miscarriage, and birth trauma. For therapists, we can also provide clinical supervision! We look forward to connecting with you to help support your journey today.
Marie Clyne is a licensed social worker and provider at Catalyss Counseling. Her focus centers around adults struggling with Depression, Anxiety, and ADHD. Marie's passion lies in getting to know you, who you want to be, and working together to help translate those goals into reality. Follow Catalyss Counseling on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.