About Loss and TherapyBy Caroline Kendal MBACP (Accred)
Losses evoke similar feelings to those experienced in bereavement.
The break up of a relationship can be devastating and can involve many different losses. We not only lose the other person, but also companionship, intimacy and security, hopes for a future together and faith in relationships. We could also lose our homes and suffer financially. When a parent, the loss of children around can be extremely hard.
The loss of a job can result in feelings of unworthiness and humiliation.
With illness and disability, we lose some of our capacity for independence and freedom.
Leaving home for the first time, beginning and ending education, entering the world of work, getting married, starting a family and retirement: although some life events may be a joyful step for us, change also brings about loss which can often be overlooked.
Moving, whether it is country, area or house can be an exciting new start but may also arouse mourning for what we have left behind.
While we hope to gain wisdom as we age, we are also confronted with changes, both physical and social. We may experience loss of health, strength, attractiveness and potency. We may grieve for dreams and hopes that were never realised.
With all loss, we can feel that our sense of dignity is threatened.
Therapy offers us empathy for what we are going through. It also enables us to make sense of what has happened, explore what it means to us and understand any part we have played. In this way, therapy can help us come to terms with our situation and our limitations, giving us strength to face the future and move on.
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