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Bereavement Specialist

Integrated MD Care

Palliative Care & Counseling located in Del Mar, CA

Everyone shares similar feelings of loss and pain following the death of a loved one, but the depth and length of bereavement vary for each person. When you feel overwhelmed or you don’t know how to cope with the loss, Bob Uslander, MD, and Rev. Elizabeth Semenova, MSW, MTS, at Integrated MD Care in Del Mar, California, can help. They offer compassionate and holistic mental health care that focuses on your immediate emotional needs. If you need help with bereavement, call the office or schedule a consultation online.

Bereavement Q & A

What is bereavement?

Bereavement is defined as the time of mourning after a loved one dies. During this time, you experience intense feelings of grief, despair, and loss. 

The duration of bereavement is different for each person, often depending on issues such as how close you were to the person who died and if you had time to prepare for the loss.

What will I experience during bereavement?

Losing a loved one, whether a parent, partner, child, family member, or friend, is an overwhelming experience. No one can predict how they’ll respond, yet everyone deals with devastating sadness while also facing major changes in their life.

The emotions you experience during bereavement usually come in waves. During bereavement, you go through the five stages of grief, but not necessarily in a specific order and often repeating stages:

Denial

Denial may feel more like numbness or shock because it’s hard to believe your loved one has died. This period serves as a defense mechanism that carries you through your initial grief and pain.

Anger

You may feel angry toward the person who died, their physician, or nearly anyone and anything. Many people also feel guilty, as though they’re responsible for their loved one’s death.

Bargaining

You focus on “what if” statements and think about what you could have done to prevent the death.

Depression

You may withdraw from others and feel overwhelming grief, sadness, and hopelessness. Depression during bereavement is similar to clinical depression, but as long as it doesn’t persist for an extended time, it’s considered to be normal.

Acceptance

Acceptance simply means you understand that you have a new reality. You still feel sad and you may not like your new reality, but eventually, you start adjusting to life without your loved one.

When should I seek bereavement counseling?

When you stay depressed, angry, or in denial for an extended time, you should consider bereavement counseling. You may also need extra support if you don’t reach the stage of acceptance.

Don’t hesitate to reach out anytime you feel overwhelmed by your emotions or unable to deal with your circumstances. The Integrated MD Care team offers compassionate mental health guidance, bereavement counseling, and grief counseling, helping each person deal with their emotions, process their loss, and start to restore their life. 

To schedule a consultation, call Integrated MD Care or use the online booking feature.

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