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5 Grief Counselor Near Me 2024: How Does It Help?

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Updated on - Written by
Medically reviewed by Kathy Shattler, MS, RDN

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While humans spend time and money finding ways to decrease the effects of aging, stay healthier for longer, and survive as many situations as possible, we are well aware that science is nowhere near changing the truth of our mortality. This means that we will have to face the loss of a loved one at some point in our lives. 

Maybe today is that day for you, and after desperately typing “grief counselor near me” into your search engine, you decided it may be best to look at all of your options before taking the plunge. 

Best Grief Counselor Near Me (February. 2024)

What Is Grief Counseling?

Bereavement counseling or grief counseling is designed to help people deal with grief after losing a loved one. A grief counselor can help develop strategies and methods for coping with loss and grief. Grief counseling gives bereaved individuals a way to express their emotions and helps them find ways to help ease the grieving process. For people who are grieving:

  • In ways that interfere with daily activities,
  • In coping with feelings of guilt and depression,
  • In finding it difficult to continue living their lives,
  • In ways that are causing problems in existing relationships,

Grief counseling may help in any or all of these situations.

The world is shifting its activities online. This has also happened to grief counseling[1]. Now you can talk to professionals online to help you through your grief. You may prefer any one of these options as the right option for you.

How Does Grief Counseling Help?

People who have received grief counseling report reductions in their mental health symptoms, such as long-term depression. Participating in grief therapy will help the bereaved understand the stages of loss and better understand emotions and thoughts. It allows people to transfer their feelings and emotions into other areas of their life. 

People can also find meaning and solace in grief support groups and grief counseling.

Moving Forward

While grief therapy will not solve all problems, sessions with behavioral health grieving counselors may help someone get through the difficult grief stages. The process will include:

  • Recognizing the loss
  • Dealing with trauma
  • Communicating openly about the loved one
  • Feeling and expressing emotions
  • Overcoming guilt and building support systems

A person will likely need to increase their support network if the person lost was the primary support system. For example, tasks like needing to file insurance papers, managing a budget, or cooking and housekeeping may be things the bereaved has never done before. A counselor can help locate community resources and encourage the client to develop stronger community ties.

Counseling for grief loss can help people understand what is going on emotionally. It enables a person to recognize the differences between sadness, grief, and depression. It is easy to see how important the support was for others by simply researching various counseling and therapy options for grieving loss.

The Stages Of Grief

According to the University of Colorado[2], denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance are the five stages of grief. These stages are part of our learning to live with the person we have lost.

Denial

The first stage of grief is denial. It allows a person to cope with the loss. This stage is when the world seems meaningless and overwhelming. Life makes no sense and is full of shock and denial. 

A person may wonder how to go on, what to do, or if it is possible to go on. They seek out ways to get through each day. A person can cope with shock and denial. 

Unknowingly, the healing process begins by accepting the reality of the loss and asking questions. The denial starts to fade, and the person grows stronger. All the emotions that were denied start to surface as they move on.

Anger

Anger is an essential part of healing. Even though anger may seem endless, a person should be open to feeling it. They will find that the anger will diminish the more it is allowed to be felt. 

Anger has no boundaries. It can affect friends, family, doctors, loved ones who have died, and even the self. Pain is what lies beneath anger.

Bargaining

Bargaining can take the form of a temporary truce after a loss. People tend to get lost in the maze of “what if” statements. The desire is to see a loved one restored and for life back to the way it was. 

The person grieving may want to travel back in time — find the tumor earlier, diagnose the illness quicker, or stop it from happening. Guilt is often a companion to bargaining. Guilt can cause one to blame themselves and think that things could have been done differently. Sometimes people even try to bargain with the pain. 

Depression

After negotiating, the attention shifts to the present. When a person feels empty, grief can enter a deeper level than previously imagined. It often feels like the depressive stage will never end. It is not a sign of a mental illness. Instead, it is a proper response to a significant loss. It is a way to withdraw from the world, feeling overwhelmed by sadness and wondering if it makes sense to go on as one. 

Acceptance

Acceptance can be confused with being “all right” or “okay with what happened.” However, this is not true. Many people never feel okay or at peace with the loss of a beloved one. Accepting that the loved one has passed away is the first step to accepting a new reality. 

How To Start Grief Counseling

It is not always easy to decide to see a grief counselor, especially for the person grieving. 

The person should consider what kind of experience they are looking for help with. A grief counselor who is skilled in a particular area may be needed to provide grief counseling. For example, a family therapist might be the best choice if a person is seeking grief counseling for the whole family. A trauma specialist is the best counselor for people who have suffered a traumatic loss.

Betterhelp, an online platform that helps people find the right fit, is available for those who seek grief counseling services or support groups.

Methods Used In Grief Counseling 

  • Talking about the loss: Sometimes, people grieving need to talk about the loss. However, they are not able to find safe spaces to do so. The grief counselor should encourage grieving people to talk about their loved ones’ lives: How were they? Who were they with? What were their hobbies?  
  • ​​How to distinguish grief from trauma: A grief counselor can help someone traumatized by the loss of a loved one or from the circumstances that led to it. They will help them adjust their perspective and redefine their relationship to the deceased to promote healthier grieving.
  • How to address guilt: People often feel guilty about things they did or didn’t do when their loved one was there. The grief counselor can help the grieving person let go of their guilt or forget about their loved one for a while to still remember them fondly later.

When Should You See Your Grief Counselor? 

Anytime a person has suffered a loss can be a good time to see a grief counselor. A person doesn’t have to be in a lot of pain to seek grief counseling.  

How To Choose The Best Grief Counselor Near Me?

It is an important decision, and you should not take it lightly. Now that you are familiar with the services offered by grief counselors, it is time to start researching. Begin by opening your browser and entering “grief counselor near me” or “grief therapist near me” into the search engine.

First, ensure that your grief counselor has the right qualifications to handle your particular situation. Your therapist should be able to address trauma and grief, which applies to any circumstances that may be unique in your grief.

Second, make sure to verify the reputation of the counselor that you are considering. You can find out if it is worth your time by reading success stories and checking for complaints from previous patients or with the licensing boards.

Finally, you will be able to meet your counselor. It can be challenging to share your grief with many people. Before you agree to a counselor, you must do a thorough screening. However, this does not mean that you should be stuck if you feel uncomfortable with a counselor. If the first option doesn’t work, make sure to have another option.

Final Thought: Does It Really Work?

Grief counseling does not mean “getting over” something. It is unreasonable to claim that you will ever “get over” grief, especially if it stems from the loss of a loved one. However, counseling for grief[3] might help you find a place where the pain doesn’t seem overwhelming.

Talking to someone can help you get through difficult times like grief. You may find it difficult depending on your personal life experiences. Every loss is unique for every person. It all depends on the circumstances, that’s why there is no one way to recover from the loss.

It can be beneficial to seek out grief counseling for help with these difficult emotions and questions. Although some grief and pain may remain, counseling can help you move forward with your life.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should you do if you need grief counseling?

It is up to you to decide when to start your grief counseling and be ready to face the emotions. Some people begin six months after the loss, while others begin immediately. Many others take several years.

What does a grief counselor do?

Counselors for grieving people help them to examine their feelings and ask questions in group therapy or individually. In addition, counselors can offer support groups and suggestions for ways to cope with grief.

Can online grief counseling be used as a substitute for face-to-face grief counseling?

Many studies, including this one by Gerhard Andersson[4], begin to examine the efficacy of online versus face-to-face therapy. While some people find the results similar, others see some differences. As a result, each person will experience a different experience.

Are Grief Counselors suitable for me?

A Grief Counselor may be needed if you’ve recently lost someone you love. To find out if a counselor can help you, start with some research.


+ 4 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

  1. Journal of Palliative Medicine. (2021). Actual Solidarity through Virtual Support: A Pilot Descriptive Study of an Online Support Group for Bereaved Parents | Journal of Palliative Medicine. [online] Available at: https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/full/10.1089/jpm.2020.0617
  2. Office of Victim Assistance. (2020). The Five Stages of Grief. [online] Available at: https://www.colorado.edu/ova/five-stages-grief
  3. Cacciatore, J., Thieleman, K., Fretts, R. and Jackson, L.B. (2021). What is good grief support? Exploring the actors and actions in social support after traumatic grief. PLOS ONE, [online] 16(5), p.e0252324. Available at: https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0252324
  4. Annual Reviews. (2019). Internet-Delivered Psychological Treatments. [online] Available at: https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/full/10.1146/annurev-clinpsy-021815-093006#_i20
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Written by:

Healthcanal Staff

Medically reviewed by:

Kathy Shattler

HealthCanal Editorial team is a team of high standard writers, who qualified the strict entrance test of Health Canal. The team involves in both topic researching and writting, which are under supervision and controlled by medical doctors of medical team.

Medically reviewed by:

Kathy Shattler

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