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Grief & Loss

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Grief can be a reaction to a variety of significant life events, including death, divorce, ending of a friendship, loss of a job, loss of health, moving to a new home or city, disability, or financial loss. Even changes or events that are considered positive or additive can involve feelings of grief such as graduation from school or leave behind a previous way of life (substance use, criminal activity).

There’s no “right” way to grieve and we know that the grieving process isn’t linear- the previously defined “stages” of grief rarely if ever occur in a specific order and we can even experience a given stage multiple times. I look at grief not as a phase or season of life but as something that we carry with us in different ways as life moves forward. While initially grief or loss may bring up feelings of sadness or anger, eventually it can trigger fond memories and feelings of nostalgia or gratitude. Grief and loss remind us who and what we care most deeply about and can be some of life’s most important teachers. This perspective is not our initial instinct, though, particularly after our first experience of a major loss. Grief is incredibly painful but I think we can learn from, grow, and find peace in our loss when we’re provided with compassion, support, and a safe environment in which to process and heal.

I offer individual therapy for both teens and adults to address grief and loss. Particularly for teens, it can be very important to have a lot of support around periods of grieving to process complex emotions and heavy circumstances. Parents or other family members may be encouraged to attend sessions with their teen at some point in therapy. Resources for community support groups can also be given if interested.

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