Redeemer Counseling Newsletter
Common Ways of Responding to Grief
It has now been about five months since we have been sheltering in place or social distancing and living with the reality of Covid and it’s painful consequences. One painful reality is that we have faced so many losses, almost simultaneously and of different kinds. Examples of these losses include: the unexpected deaths of our loved ones, the loss of health of Covid survivors, job losses, the lack of predictable income and means of affording our basic needs like food and shelter, and the loss of a way of life, from restrictions imposed on how we socialize or how we can interact with each other in our church communities. Normal milestones are delayed as people defer graduation ceremonies, weddings, and funeral services. Sometimes, we experience multiple losses in close proximity to each other and it can be overwhelming. We have much to grieve about at this time.
Even though grief is a normal and natural reaction to experiencing losses of any kind, the pain of it is an experience that most of us are uncomfortable processing for ourselves or with others. Deep down, our bodies and souls know that grief and loss are contrary to God's original design for humanity and his plan of how we should experience each other and the world. In our fallenness, we tend to create coping mechanisms to avoid the pain, relying on our own strength and resources. So when times of crisis and uncertainty hit, it is difficult for us to turn to God to mourn and be comforted.
Even caregivers, at times, will avoid the discomfort and pain of the grieving process. This month’s tool, adapted from material in the Redeemer Counseling Mourning with Hope grief curriculum, will discuss common ways we avoid grief and factors that influence the way people grieve. This tool will be helpful in identifying what to pay attention to in processing your own grief and becoming more comfortable with mourning with others.
Christine Chu, LCSW