Everyone wishes to live a happy and fulfilling life, but sadness is part of life as well. Bereavement is a name given to the period of sadness when a person loses a family member or friend. Grief is the most natural response if you lose someone you know closely, like family members or friends.
Grief comes in many forms and leads to a mental, social, physical, and emotional response. The mental response may include despair, anxiety, guilt, and sadness. In comparison, the physical reaction may include lack of hunger, irregular sleep patterns,s and changes in behavior.
The amount of time a bereavement may last depend on how close you were to the person who passed away. A person mostly grieves the most when anyone from his families like parents, siblings, or children, passes away. The one thing that you may miss the most during the passing of a close association is emotional support. Your family and friends are closest to you and offer maximum comfort and support. There is also hospice care that provides proper bereavement support, particularly to old adults.
Does Hospice care offer Bereavement Service?
Supporting and caring for older members of society is a priority in every hospice care center. A bereavement program lasts for 13 months and includes providing all the necessary support and grief counseling.
Each person may have a different approach when coming to terms with the death of a close relative or acquaintance. Not every person may experience or behave with the loss of a loved one in the same manner. Apart from the grief, there are religious and cultural practices that one has to perform.
The grieving process starts when a loved one passes away and can continue for many days, weeks, and even months. Coming to terms with a loss can be physically and emotionally quite exhausting. Hospice care offers bereavement services to family members, friends, and caregivers. The key features of a bereavement program are
- Helping immediate family to understand the grief process
- Developing healthy coping strategies
- Moral support for the family and friends to adjust to the period after the passing of a loved one
- Providing sound advice and instruction when it comes to decision making
- Considering and solving all the religious and social concerns
- Assisting the family to adapt to the new environment after a person has passed away
- Respecting the religious practices and cultural traditions that the family wants to perform
How to Handle Grief after a Loss?
One of the most crucial tasks for hospice care is managing grief, as every person has his/her way to cope with the loss of a family member, close relative, or friend. After so many centuries, no one can define what the right way to grieve is. The first few days and weeks are the most crucial and tough times for the family. Some of the tasks that hospice care seems to consider in the grieving process are
- Allowing the person to mourn the loss and providing support
- Saying a prayer for the person who passed away
- Giving hope to the family and friends and allowing them to accept the reality of a loss
- Providing a shoulder for a person to cry on and share the loss
There are certain steps that a team from the hospice care center performs which are key in supporting the bereaved family. The hospice care team knows what to expect and expertly performs the important tasks of the bereavement program.
The first reaction of the immediate family upon hearing the passing of a family member is not accepting the news. The term ‘complicated grief’ defines some of the intense reactions that a person may display, but it only happens when a loved one suddenly passes away.
Most family members and close friends are lost and need support and guidance to help them decide. The hospice care team will give time to the family and friends to mourn the loss. The team will also offer to facilitate any religious rituals that are to be performed.
What is Anticipatory Grief?
The phase of grieving that starts before losing a loved one is ‘Anticipatory Grief,’ and it usually happens when a patient is suffering from a chronic disease. The process allows a person and the family to prepare for the final goodbye. You also get time to imagine life without the person.
There are also grief counseling support groups where one can participate and easily share the sadness and despair. In group meetings, you can openly share your thoughts and feelings without thinking that people will judge you. Some of the benefits of attending a grief counseling session are
You may feel alone and lost when passing a close family member. The main purpose of the grief group is to give you comfort and support. In the session, you will hear similar grief stories and feel relief knowing that other people feel the same emotions.
- Coping with grief
Personal health is a major cause of concern for those who mourn the passing of a loved one. If you keep to yourself, then you can engulf yourself in feelings of loneliness and boredom. Going out to a session gives you something to look out for. You will take a shower, iron the clothes and wear them. You may even drop by your favorite restaurant to eat a meal.
- Getting easy solutions to find relief
The more you attend the grief group meetings, the more you can hear how to cope with sadness. If a dozen people are speaking about their coping mechanisms, you can easily relate to one and try to practice it.
If you are not comfortable sharing your grief with a group of unfamiliar people, then you can always get a one-on-one grief counseling session.
Losing a loved one is part of life, and you may have heard the old saying ‘Life goes on,’ which is quite true. Grief is something that everyone feels one time or another, but the main goal is accepting reality and moving on.
Knowing that a loved one can arouse feelings of sadness and fear in you. But knowing that the person is receiving the best medical treatment from hospice care can make you hopeful. Bereavement support provides the resources needed to cope up with the loss. Hospice care usually provides individual counseling, grief counseling to families, and educational literature.