Death and Dying, Family Caregiver Stress Counsellors

Death and Dying, Family Caregiver Stress

Death and dying are common issues faced by people who seek counselling. When a loved one passes away,  dormant feelings of rejection, separation and abandonment in a person's life history tend to resurface. Every client has a different reaction to death and dying, a topic that has been a taboo in many cultures.

Many people are ill-equipped to deal with death and dying, and the process of adjustment that naturally has to follow such an event. During the grieving process, a person tends to react emotionally, but their character usually doesn't change. They are bound to review their relationship with the deceased individual, and express the unfairness of the death. The grieving person might seek out other people to replace the deceased, while at the same time revising their current relationships and personal identity.

The mourning process consists of a number of stages, that most people experience. The stages usually occur consecutively, but it's natural to experience them in a different order, to experience more than one at a time, or to skip a stage altogether. Some people have reported regressing to a previous stage, and moving back and forth between stages.

Unresolved grief can lead to psychopathology. It takes a strong person to seek help and therapy can help you realize that mourning is a natural process that allows you to explore life after the loss of a loved one. It will help you to find new coping mechanisms and help you to move forward with a life that does not include him or her.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who works with clients who are grieving the loss of someone, you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Family caregiver stress is not a sign that you don't love the person you are looking after. In fact, even professionally trained caregivers who are hired to take care of someone can become tired and experience the symptoms of stress that a family caregiver might experience. Being responsible for someone physical and psychological wellbeing places tremendous strain on a person, particularly if it's a loved one.

Whether you are taking care of a spouse or a parent after surgery for a few weeks, or raising a child with emotional or physical disabilities, the situation presents a set of unique and difficult circumstances. It's only natural to feel overwhelmed and experience embarrassment, shame, sadness, grief, guilt, disappointment, fear, anger, anxiety and depression.

The major factor that contributes to family caregiver stress is the fact that taking care of someone else can isolate you from other people. The patient usually requires ongoing, extensive care. Many people, especially those who took care of themselves before becoming incapacitated, tend to become difficult and moody as the result of losing their independence. Afterwards, they tend to be wracked by guilt.

The caretaker, in turn, has to cope not only with his or her emotions, but also with that of the patient. While caretakers usually enjoy their work, and love taking care of people, particularly loved ones, it can be exhausting and emotionally draining. Also, there is usually very little time left for self-care.

Psychotherapy can help to address family caregiver stress, particularly when the carer feels that he or she lacks support, or has become anxious, overwhelmed, isolated or depressed.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who offers family therapies to address your family caregiver stress  issues, you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

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Norma Hoeppner

M.S.W., RSW
In private practice since 2007, Norma has been a dynamic clinical therapist across diverse health settings since 1989. Currently she practices with Clear Counselling Inc. in Vancouver, as well as an office on... Read more