Does that describe you? You’ve been reading about bereavement support groups, but have hesitated because you’re not sure if it would be right for you, or you’re worried that you might start to cry, or you think that no one wants to listen to your problems. Bereavement support groups are “safe places” to tell your story in the company of others who are coping with a similar loss. Bereaved people often fee that no one in their circle of family or friends really understands what they’re going through. They can feel very isolated and alone. A support group can help to alleviate those feelings.
At the beginning of each meeting, the facilitator reminds everyone that no one will be forced to talk. Some people will have difficulty sharing. It’s okay to just sit and listen. No one will think less of you, because even if you aren’t able to share, your very prescence gives unspoken support to the others. Boxes of tissues are brought to meetings because it’s only natural that you might shed tears as you share or as you listen to others.
One grief educator describes a support group as the following: “… a healing circle that helps members bear up under the heavy burden of loss without giving way. The group provides a safe, structured place where normal, healthy people bound by the experience of loss can come together on a regular basis to share their stories, get their concerns and feelings validated, learn more about the grieving process, express and work through their feelings and reflect with one another on the meaning of it all. Members have the opportunity to grow by giving help as well as receiving it.”