Skip to main content
  1. Counselling Services/
  2. Reasons for Counselling/

Bereavement

The process of grieving the loss of a loved one is often surreal and deeply painful. The feelings of loss are often in proportion to how much love there was for this person. The greater the love and connection, the greater the feeling of loss when he or she is gone.

The Kubler-Ross model, commonly known as The Five Stages of Grief, is a theory first introduced by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying.

The stages, include:

  • Denial - “I feel fine.”; “This can’t be happening, not to me.” Denial is usually only a temporary defense for the individual. This feeling is generally replaced with heightened awareness of possessions and individuals that will be left behind after death.

  • Anger - “Why me? It’s not fair!”; “How can this happen to me?”; “Who is to blame?” Once in the second stage, the individual recognizes that denial cannot continue. Because of anger, the person is very difficult to care for due to misplaced feelings of rage and envy.

  • Bargaining - “I’ll do anything for a few more years.”; “I will give my life savings if…” The third stage involves the hope that the individual can somehow postpone or delay death. Usually, the negotiation for an extended life is made with a higher power in exchange for a reformed lifestyle. Psychologically, the individual is saying, “I understand I will die, but if I could just do something to buy more time…”

  • Depression - “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?”; “I’m going to die soon so what’s the point… What’s the point?”; “I miss my loved one, why go on?” During the fourth stage, the dying person begins to understand the certainty of death. Because of this, the individual may become silent, refuse visitors and spend much of the time crying and grieving. This process allows the dying person to disconnect from things of love and affection. It is not recommended to attempt to cheer up an individual who is in this stage. It is an important time for grieving that must be processed.

  • Acceptance - “It’s going to be okay.”; “I can’t fight it, I may as well prepare for it.” In this last stage, individuals begin to come to terms with their mortality, or that of a loved one, or other tragic event.

Walking through the stages of grief with a therapist can help the process in this sad time.

Kubler-Ross model. (2002). Retrieved February 3, 2012, from K├╝bler-Ross model

Related

Addictions
You may find that your continued involvement with a substance or activity, despite its negative consequences, is a sign of addiction, which requires understanding and addressing the roots of the issue in healthier ways.
Anger and Conflict
Conflict in relationships escalate through three stages: complaint is expressing dissatisfaction, criticism involves identifying recurring behavioral patterns, but contempt, the most toxic stage, attacks a person’s character, leading to a destructive ‘you versus me’ dynamic
Anxiety
If you’re experiencing symptoms of anxiety such as apprehension, tension, or excessive worry, it’s important to talk to your GP and consider counselling, as it can provide valuable support and strategies to address underlying contributing factors and manage anxiety effectively.
Depression
If you are experiencing symptoms like persistent low mood, loss of interest in activities, and other emotional or physical changes, your GP can provide initial support and medication. Speaking with a counsellor can help identify the underlying factors and help you through.
Gender and Sexual Identity
If you have questions about your gender or sexuality, deeply intertwined with your self-identity, counselling can offer a supportive environment to enhance your self-awareness, navigate societal challenges, and gain a clearer understanding of your true self.
Panic Attacks
If you’re experiencing intense fear, palpitations, or other symptoms of panic attacks, seek help to process the contributing factors to the panic and explore core beliefs that may be adversly affecting your mental health.