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Bereavement Counselling

Bereavement counselling is offered by therapists from a variety of different therapeutic backgrounds. Psychodynamic therapy for example, offers individuals the chance to explore unresolved issues and feelings from the past. This may be especially pertinent to someone trying to work through their grief. Other supportive approaches like client centred therapy may also prove helpful to the bereaved, by providing them with a safe non-judgemental environment, in which they can express their feelings.

Definition of bereavement - Bereavement is part of a natural process that occurs when someone loses a family member or close friend, and can effect people in different ways. Some experience intense anguish, while others may not exhibit their grief in the conventional sense.

While the initial reaction can last up to 12 months, there are a number of stages that the bereaved may go through. These may include disbelief, mental pain and guilt. However, these symptoms may vary according to circumstances, such as the age of the person who has died and the manner of their death (sudden or expected). In addition grief can sometimes lead to depression. If this happens the support of family and friends can be very important. It may also be a good idea to seek counselling in severe cases.

Bereavement counselling may be helpful to people who need extra help in working through their grief. It offers them a chance to explore their feelings and come to terms with their loss by talking to someone that is professionally trained to help. In some cases people suppress their grief, which may lead to mental problems later on. This is when bereavement counselling and grief therapy can prove very useful.

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Bereavement help-lines

Cruse Bereavement Care - 0870 167 1677
The registered charity provides a phone number for people suffering from grief. They provide emotional support for the bereaved and practical information for issues surrounding the death of a loved one.

The Compassionate Friends - 0845 123 2304
This organisation offers help and support to parents who have suffered the loss of a child. Their helpline is manned by people who have experienced similar bereavement, who give support and provide information about local grief counsellors.

Grief and bereavement resources

Cruise Bereavement Care
This registered charity was set up to help the bereaved come to terms with their loss. The site is full of information about the process of grief and its surrounding issues. It also contains information about grief counselling and grief therapy.

The Child Bereavement Trust
A charitable organisation that is intended to help bereaved families. The site provides plenty of information in the form of articles and leaflets, to help people make sense of the process of grief. There's an extensive range of information and support available here.

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