Human beings pass through different stages of life. Each stage provide its own unique event that maybe expected or unexpected. Life events are events that changes the status or circumstances of an individual. These events can be predictable or unpredictable. Life events can bring joy or sadness in human lives. They destabilize the status of an individual at any situation. Major life events in human life are having a birth, getting marriage or divorce, death of a loved one, starting a new job, losing a job, change of residence, losing health, getting promotion in the job and retirements. Unpredictable life events tends to find people unprepared and in most cases leads to challenges when trying to adjust to accommodate them (Robben, 2017, pp.67-78). The major aim of this paper is to bring out the significant life events in human lives and how they can impacts on person and social networks they belong.
Significant life events and their impacts
Life events at the first initial stages affects individuals at the personal level. Impacts with time are experienced by the people around the affected individual. Impacts can be classified into positive or negative depending with the consequences they attracts (Kubler, 2014, pp. 32-39). To start with, giving birth, getting marriage, getting promotion at the job and retirement all leads to joy and happiness to the people in our social networks, hence qualifying into positive impacts.
On the other hand, death of loved ones, losing the health, losing a job, and accidents or disabilities are significant life events that exposes individuals into negative impacts linked to health effects like stress, depressions and illness that in most cases are very challenging to manage. Stresses and depression leads to traumatic conditions that are connected to emotional impacts like sense of loss, social impacts like isolation and seclusion, and intellectual impacts like loosing of the cognitive functions (Kessler, 2014, p. 78).
Impacts are experienced by friends, family, working colleagues and everyone connected to the person experiencing the life event. In most cases impacts as it have been highlighted earlier leads to illness, depression, family breakdown and to a larger extent cause criminality (Corr, 2018, pp.16-20)
Life events like diseases have also been reported to expose the individuals in the financial problems. Diseases attracts huge bills that forces one to sell properties and personal belongings to cater for the bills. Death of the parents leave the children with difficulties in meeting their basic needs. This in most cases in developing countries contributes to the escalation of the number of street families in the cities. Other life events that exposes one into financial difficulties are lose of job, accidents and unplanned retirement (Ross, 2015, pp. 78-92).
Focusing on the other side of the coin, life events like starting a job and getting a promotion leads to positive financial impacts to individuals and people in the social networks. People on the health care also experience the negative impacts as a result of life events to the people they are taking care of. Diseases like cancer for instance is a significant life events that exposes the health practitioners into stress and sacrifices of their time and resources when struggling to manage (Corr, 2016, pp. 78-96).
As mention earlier life events leads to stresses, depressions and traumatic conditions to an individual. To some extent these conditions can leads to abnormality and brain damage and other conditions like cancer leading to difficulties in handling individuals with this conditions. This exposes therapist in stresses and difficulties in execution of their duties. The difficulties increases with the extent of the life event. In general, life events as elaborated above leads to impacts classified into four groups namely; physical or health impacts, emotional impacts, social impacts and intellectual impacts (Fergusson, 2014, pp.67-69).
Support available for people experiencing significant life events
There exist many organizations and platforms to provide support to individual and their social networks experiencing significant life events. Different organizations and government agencies have different policies placed in place to reduce the impacts of the life events to the affected individuals (Horwood, 2014, pp.93-96).
Organisational support to individuals experiencing significant life events
Support exist in three major form namely; Organisational policies and procedures, support from the social networks and support from external sources. Organizational policies and procedures are placed in place in relation to provide proper counselling, access to specialist service and maintenance of the individual dignity. Different charitable organizations like WHO and CRUSE has measures in place to assist people going through grief in their lives. People living with stress, depressions and traumatic conditions are provided with counselling and trainings to overcome these conditions (Taylor, 2018.pp.2-20).
The policies have been effective especially to the bereaved individuals. CRUSE for example has assisted more than 32000 people including the children. Strict measures and guidelines to curb the impacts have been provided. These measures are in order to identify the affected people and links them to necessary aids, protect, and ensure they are getting proper care necessary. Proper organization’s procedures and policies provide support to both individuals and social network to manage the significant life events (Law, 2015, p.78).
Social networks support to individuals experiencing significant life events
Social network including friends, family, coworkers, partners, supporting groups and self-help groups also provide support to the people going through the life events. Social networks provide immediate help to individuals going through grieves. The help at this stage include physical, mental and financial supports to affected groups. Financial support assist people going through significant life events to access proper medications and nutrition.
Social networks also provide support by encouraging the individuals on life events to seek proper services like medications and professional counselling. Social networks have proven to be very effective in providing support to the people undergoing significant life events because they are next to them and any emotional, social, physical and intellectual change is noticed easily (Weber, 2016, p.20).
Suitability of external sources of support for those affected by significant life events
External foundations of support include charitable groups, online, societal care and health specialists, social media and self-help groups. All these have been there to support individuals overcome grieves and live normal lives. The biggest problem that hinder this support is depression and lack proper communications. Most people undergoing life events tends to avoid communications, hence suffer internally and with time this can leads to dangers patient’s health. This group involve doctor and therapist who walk with the patients with significant life events to achieve their normal lives (Generaal, 2016, pp.34-45).
Organisational responses to need to support individuals experiencing significant life events
Over the years, different healthcare and social care have different responses for people experiencing significant life event. Reactions depends on the way they view these kinds of people. To begin with, national health care services provide counselling, guidance, and treatments to the people experiencing the life events. In the recent past a number of campaigns have been done to promote people experiencing diseases like cancer and HIV which are significant life events. The campaigns are intended to give appropriate policy framework and guidelines in tackling these conditions (Philips, 2015, pp.359-368).
Secondly, speedy assessment of situations and proper provision of right cares and guidance to the individual going through difficult life events form a second response. This is done through practitioners, hospitals and clinics to diagnose the affected groups in our society. they are able to closely assess patient’s needs and recommend proper care services as per the level of the life events (Eskin,2014,pp.89-94)
Thirdly, health care giver institutions form the basis of the second response. These institutions gives treatments care to patients and also provide psychological supports to the affected individuals and their families. The care giver respond with long term strategies and planning for affected individuals. They give support services, treatment needs and ensure the patient are comfortable and free from any kind of pain (Uslu,2014,pp.89-94).
Reflection of personal contributions to support individual experiencing life events
From my own evaluation, I am pretty sure my contribution towards provision of support to individuals experiencing difficult life events is in developmental stage. Throughout the course I have learn the need of providing necessities to individuals and their families. I have also learned the joy of providing genuine concerns support (Generaal, 2016, pp.4-9)..
I trust my expertise in communications and I can be able to link up well with the affected individuals and their families, hence providing necessary guidance and needs as much as possible. Just for the record, last year when I was working in one of the organization, one of my colleagues get sick but no one noticed until it was too late. The realization comes and we had to make financial contributions to support him. Apart from helping him financially, I was able to meet him daily and provide my moral supports and guidelines (Weber, 2016, pp.36-42).
This study has indicated that in human being lifetime, different life events are experienced which have significant effects in one way or the other on how people lives and relates to other in the society. Significant life events calls for maximum support and care. Overall life events leave affected people in grieves and it is at this time they need the support from friends and family most. Some life events like cancer make the patients feel scared, stressed and angry as results of the unexpected and unwanted changes in their lives.
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