My mom had one brother, with whom my grandmother who was 68 years old was staying. A few months ago my uncle died due to a car accident and we bring my grandmother to our home. From then my grandmother went into depression and later she is suffering from dementia. As the primary treatment of the dementia patient begins at home. My mom had become her foremost carer who looks after her all the time. My mom had left her job too for taking grandmother’s care. She had completely devoted her life for caring of grandmother. She passed away last month at the age of 79.
There are some questions which I want to ask my mother by being a counsellor would be, “what do you feel this time?” As grandmother was so close to you and spend most of the time with her, what will you do now to fulfill the time? Do you need any help from other family members? What will you do to stay away from the grief of loss? (Aoun et al. 2017)
I personally think that the patient must be provided with mental support. She must be acknowledged with warmth, empathy and love. She must be provided with some personal space so that she can remember all the love they had shared. She must be allowed to do all the rituals for her beloved and to provide chance for her grief.
As there were no such funeral was done she does not get time to grief for her loved one. When someone talks about grief there are no rules or regulation being applied. It is important to do the essential things for Mary to do the necessary things she needs in mourning and grief.
After all these things she must supported by counselling. It might be at home or might at the doctor’s chamber. She must be handled very carefully as she felt disenfranchised. She must provide with that comfort level so that her feeling of disenfranchised gets removed and she can lead a normal life again (Robinson, Evelyn. Long Term Outcomes of Losing a Child through Adoption: The Impact of Disenfranchised Grief. Grief Matters: The Australian Journal of Grief and Bereavement, Vol. 10, No. 1, Autumn 2007: 8-11.
As we people are different, the grieving for everyone is also different. Some of the people can grief in less time but some of them need year after year for grieving. It mainly depends upon the circumstances of deaths causes the impact of grieving. The grieving of a person is depended on the functions of a person’s life. It mainly depends upon the eating habits, the daily activities and the sleeping habits. They need to know that there is a wide range of emotions and behaviour that is associated with grief. Hence the thoughts of the grief continues to extend which leads to the struggle of an individual in their daily life activities; had problem in sleeping, unable to concentrate on the work. So in order to work with this type client I would like to found out what they are wanting and also for assisting towards their work (Machin, Bartlam and Bartlam, 2015).
The counsellor must not make the assessment under DSM; it is a task of the doctor and a psychiatrist or a psychologist. Hence from the point of view of counsellor I generally think that which treatment is important for the client. Thus the patient who is grieving the loss of the loved one cannot be diagnosed under DSM IV.
This type of counselling includes finding of the techniques which can assist them in doing their daily activities efficiently; concentrate on their work; able to sleep well and can return to their normal life. It can be done by taking out time for oneself for relaxation and giving space between activities like counselling sessions.
I agree in testing somebody when is troublesome and needs to be planned accurately as it can make protection and further mischief that person. I too have ended up experiencing distress and restraining it for a long time until the point when one day I was really going to my guiding 2 workshop and was tested by the instructor about whether I was sincerely feeling recouped as he saw generally all over. I too have ended up experiencing sadness and containing it for a long time until the point that one day I was really going to my directing 2 workshop and was tested by the educator about whether I was sincerely feeling recouped as he saw generally all over.
The counsellor then found a cue when it comes a time to challenge the client with the help of bringing presence of some of the therapeutic relationship. The counsellor must be aware of the affects of some of the verbal and non-verbal cues which generally provides some opportunities which deepen the self-awareness of the client and to understand their grief; which helps in facilitating the personal growth of an individual. By the means of narrating their grief again and again, the client gets closer to the counsellor and is able to show a eagerness to expand better control on their grief and finding some ways by which they can function in a better way.
Niemeyer, 2014 (Winokuer and Harris, 2015, p. 100) makes a decent point, that actually, we may never bring the expired individual back and that an open door for an intercession isn't as imperative as the sentiment bolster the customer feels, that I, as their instructor will never abandon them in their sorrow (I like this). I translate this as, an intercession may not generally be fundamental, be that as it may, 'being there', tuning in, being alright with quiets and traveling with the customer through their agony is required in the part of viable melancholy guiding. Likewise, you can't challenge a customer on the off chance that you have not first assembled a customer focused relationship, expand on trust.
It is important for a grief counsellor to understand that experiences and expression of grief is different for every person that is shaped by culture. They need to know that there is a wide range of emotions and behaviour that is associated with grief, however, it is evident that in all cultures and places, grieving person benefit by seeking support from others. Grief counsellor need to know the process of grieving in the culture of the person being counselled. The counsellor should know how to draw on the strengths of the client and the development of healthy coping mechanism can be done accordingly. The counsellor need to know the childhood and family history with any past medical history as it can also influence process of grief. It is also important to know the relationship of the deceased person with the client to resolve the areas of conflict and address any kind of suicidal thoughts or depression due to the loss.
A grief counsellor needs to be culturally sensitive while observing people from different heritage attending a grief session together. Counsellor need to be culturally sensitive while supporting grief process with people from other cultures. Intercultural communication is important that can help to communicate with people from different cultures during grieving process (Stroebe and Schut 2015). Grief counsellor needs to develop emotions to understand and appreciate the cultural differences so that appropriate and effective behaviour can be promoted through intercultural communication. It is also important to view and develop awareness about the fundamental patterns of human interaction that would suffice cultural sensitivity during communicating with people from different heritage and positive participation in grieving process regardless of their profession (Davis 2015).
Burnout recognition in oneself can be observed when one feels powerless in resolving the recurring problems. There is also creation of stress when one is unable to solve the problems and try to change the current reality. Moreover, there is also perceived inability in oneself when one cannot concentrate, goals are drowning out and random thoughts are seeping in. There is also lack of interest in socializing with others that can be observed by family members or peers. There might also be feeling of carelessness or stagnation due to feeling of burnout. As it affects differently, it is difficult to diagnose in oneself. The way to recognize burnout is not through symptoms rather analysing that something is different and change is perceived negatively (Skovholt and Trotter-Mathison 2014).
When I feel heavy and emotional, I distract myself by taking a break from the usual schedule. Distraction techniques are good for the regulation of intense emotions, divert myself towards watching television, attending art museums, playing games, writing down every emotion that I feel in my diary, and then refocus when my nervous system settles down.
Self-soothing and self-motivation techniques can be helpful for a grief counsellor in coping with heaviness and grief. There is no need of supervision as making good utilization of time can be helpful in dealing with heaviness. It can be done by taking out time for oneself for relaxation and giving space between activities like counselling sessions. Exercise, yoga and meditation can be helpful in improving the mood and general health. Devoting time towards interests and hobbies can be helpful in forgetting the motional thoughts. Moreover, socialising can also be helpful by interacting with others or sharing feelings with a close person (Skovholt and Trotter-Mathison 2016).
Before the family session, it is important to talk to the family members individually. During individual session, it is important to talk to every family member, children including father that would help to know the areas of personal conflict within them that is giving rise to arguments. Moreover, it would also be helpful in developing individual conflict management styles for the family members. This needs to be noted down to be discussed in the family session.
During the family session, the personal conflicts, feelings and resentment towards each other can be discussed openly to each other. The questions involve the type of feelings, reasons for resentment that they have for each other need to be discussed in the family session that can pave the way for developing strategies to resolve conflicts between them and bring the family together at the end of the session.
When the family comes together for session, there is collaboration and management of conflict through negotiation between them. This also helps to explore the areas of disagreement, generation of alternatives and reaching a mutually satisfying solution. This collaboration of conflict management would allow the family members to learn things from the others’ perspective (Ducharme et al. 2015). Compromising during the family session can also be helpful to manage conflict through splitting of difference so that the solution partially satisfies all the family members. It is also useful in a way as there is fast decision-making on the family disagreements and brings the family together at the end of the session (Petch et al. 2014).
When I saw a young person underwent loss during his childhood, I observed the change in feelings that was over powering him. I could feel that there was change in his behaviour and negativity was prevailing. He was not willing to socialise with others and confined himself. He was unable to interact with others and went through emotional turmoil with myriad of feelings. He was unable to cope up with his feelings and wanted to seek support from his family and close ones.
In context to rituals or beliefs system, I observed that there was spiritual practice and prayers were held to address the spiritual needs of the deceased person. Mourning sessions are held to offer prayers to the deceased person so that his or her soul rest in peace. While working with an adult who did not acknowledge his or her childhood loss, life history narrative can be helpful to know about the childhood and history of the client. Narrative inquiry through interpersonal sensitive communication can be helpful for making the client comfortable and at ease to reveal his or her history (Norton and Gino 2014). This can be helpful in exchanging information, meaning and feelings through verbal and non-verbal communication (Neimeyer, Klass and Dennis 2014).
Davis, P. 2015. Differences Between Individual-based and Collective-based Systems of Culture. 36Chronic Illness–, 27.
Ducharme, F., Lachance, L., Lévesque, L., Zarit, S.H. and Kergoat, M.J., 2015. Maintaining the potential of a psycho-educational program: Efficacy of a booster session after an intervention offered family caregivers at disclosure of a relative's dementia diagnosis. Aging & mental health, 19(3), pp.207-216.
Neimeyer, R.A., Klass, D. and Dennis, M.R., 2014. A social constructionist account of grief: Loss and the narration of meaning. Death Studies, 38(8), pp.485-498
Norton, M.I. and Gino, F., 2014. Rituals alleviate grieving for loved ones, lovers, and lotteries. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 143(1), p.266.
Petch, J., Murray, J., Bickerdike, A. and Lewis, P., 2014. Psychological distress in Australian clients seeking family and relationship counselling and mediation services. Australian Psychologist, 49(1), pp.28-36.
Skovholt, T.M. and Trotter-Mathison, M., 2014. The resilient practitioner: Burnout prevention and self-care strategies for counselors, therapists, teachers, and health professionals. Routledge.
Skovholt, T.M. and Trotter-Mathison, M., 2016. The resilient practitioner: Burnout and compassion fatigue prevention and self-care strategies for the helping professions. Routledge.
Stroebe, M. and Schut, H., 2015. Family matters in bereavement: Toward an integrative intra-interpersonal coping model. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 10(6), pp.873-879.
Aoun, S.M., Rumbold, B., Howting, D., Bolleter, A. and Breen, L.J., 2017. Bereavement support for family caregivers: The gap between guidelines and practice in palliative care. PloS one, 12(10), p.e0184750.
Robinson, Evelyn. Long Term Outcomes of Losing a Child through Adoption: The Impact of Disenfranchised Grief. Grief Matters: The Australian Journal of Grief and Bereavement, Vol. 10, No. 1, Autumn 2007: 8-11.
Machin, L., Bartlam, R. and Bartlam, B., 2015. Identifying levels of vulnerability in grief using the Adult Attitude to Grief scale: from theory to practice. Bereavement Care, 34(2), pp.59-68.
Parkes, C.M., 2014. Diagnostic criteria for complications of bereavement in the DSM-5. Bereavement Care, 33(3), pp.113-117.
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