Loss is an experience that we will all face at some point, and it can be one of life’s most stressful events. Grief is our reaction to loss and encompasses a range of emotions, thoughts, and experiences. 

What is grief?


Grief is a natural response to losing someone or something that is important to you. It may also occur in anticipation of a loss. Often, grief involves painful emotions such as sorrow, shock, guilt, and profound sadness. Grief can also impact cognitive processes, such as concentration and focus, and impact physical health. 


What types of losses cause grief?


Grief occurs when you lose someone or something that is important to you, including the following:


  • The death or anticipated death of a family member, friend, or pet.
  • Coming to terms with a medical illness/diagnosis for yourself or for someone you care about.
  • Miscarriage or fertility challenges. 
  • Witnessing yourself and others age, and face death.
  • Life transitions, including entering or exiting the workforce, career change, becoming a parent, adjusting to chronic illness, transitioning out of high school, or transitioning out of sport.
  • The loss of a friendship family or romantic relationship or going through a divorce.


How do people grieve?


There is no one correct way to grieve, and adaptation to grief will look different for each person. Some people grieve by experiencing intense emotions while others work through grief using reflection and problem solving, and others experience aspects of both. It can be challenging when people grieve differently, as they may not understand each other, and this may lead to conflict. 


There is no timeline for grief. Everyone grieves at their own pace. In many cases, we never stop grieving a loss, but we learn to accept it and move forward with our lives. 

How can counselling help with grief and loss?



Since grief is considered a natural process, the goal of counselling is not to make the grief go away. Rather, counselling can provide a space to explore your grief in a supportive environment and find new ways to adapt to life after loss and decrease the impact of grief on daily functioning. Feeling understood and heard and having your grief recognized and validated is an important factor in lightening the burden of loss.  


Additionally, counselling can help to determine whether you might be experiencing a persistent and severe form of grief called complicated grief, which may require slightly different treatment.


Contrary to what some may believe, grieving the loss of a loved one does not mean you relinquish them from your life. In fact, counselling can help you to reconstruct the bond with your loved one in a way that allows you to maintain the bond while also moving on with life. 


Finally, grief may also involve aspects of trauma, which can be address using various methods of trauma therapy


Monarch Psychology offers individual counseling both in-person and online with a free 15-minute phone consultation.


Contact us today for more information