Loss is an unfortunate part of life for everyone. Sometimes, you can’t cope with the loss on your own. A wide range of emotions is normal when you are going through the grieving process. However, if your grief is effecting your safety or well-being, you may need to seek grief counseling therapy. At GIA Miami, we offer grief therapy in addition to a wide range of substance use and mental health treatments. To learn more about the benefits of this therapeutic option, contact GIA Miami today at 833.713.0828.

Signs and Stages of Grief

woman and therapist in a grief therapy counseling sessionYou are likely familiar with the most widely known five stages of grief. These are:

  • Denial
  • Anger
  • Bargaining
  • Depression
  • Acceptance

Another popular model isn’t stage-based. Instead, it divides grieving into two types of activities. These are loss-oriented activities and restoration-focused activities.

Loss-oriented activities are what you would think of as normal grieving activities. Crying, sadness, anger, a sense of yearning or loss, and a preoccupation with the death itself are loss oriented activities.

Restoration activities focus on the changes to your life related to the loss. In many ways, it is how you learn to live again. You may find yourself in a new role. Your routine will change. You’ll need to find new ways of connecting with your loved ones. As you grieve, you will probably move back and forth between loss and restoration activities. As time goes on, the focus should shift from loss activities to restoration activities.

When Do You Need Grief Counseling Therapy?

Your reaction to a loss depends on many factors. Many people find that they need help to cope with a loss at some point in their lives, leading them to seek grief therapy. Bereavement is what normally comes to mind when you think of grief counseling. However, it’s important to know that any traumatic loss can require therapy. Sometimes grief is complex because there are mixed emotions, which makes it harder to process on your own.

A divorce is an example. If you experienced a lot of pain in the relationship, you might struggle to give yourself permission to grieve the loss. Why should you grieve when the loss is a good thing in the long term? This can also occur when a child leaves home. You are proud of them. That said, you have lost their constant presence in your home.

Often, when someone seeks grief therapy, it is because they have developed complicated grief. Complicated grief symptoms are more intense than those of regular grief, and they can persist for a longer period of time. Complicated grief often lasts more than a year.

Other signs of complicated grief include:

  • Intense sadness
  • Sense of hopelessness and emptiness
  • Detachment from loved ones
  • Preoccupation with the deceased or avoidance of reminders or speaking of them
  • Inability to recall happy memories
  • A longing to be reunited with the deceased

Grief Therapy and Mental Wellness

Complicated or prolonged grief is strongly associated with mental health disorders. For instance, one study found men who were grieving had a significantly higher rate of alcoholism after two years. Another study found that even in those with major depressive disorder, those who also had complicated grief were much more likely to have a substance use disorder.

Substance use often develops in an attempt to self medicate. The person uses substances to relieve negative feelings, and a cycle of usage begins. However, grief actually changes the brain. It activates a part of the brain known to play a key role in substance use. If you are suffering from a substance use disorder and grief, you will need mental wellness treatment along with grief therapy.

Contact GIA Miami

At GIA Miami, we use a scientific approach to treatment. We combine the latest evidence-based techniques for addiction and mental health treatment with the compassionate care you need to get through this difficult time. For instance, we offer a wide variety of therapeutic models, including CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy) and TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation). We also offer telehealth services for those who aren’t able to attend our facility in person. If you need grief counseling therapy, contact us today at 833.713.0828. You don’t have to carry your grief all alone. We can help.