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Therapy Show

Oct 28, 2019

Dr. Judith McCoyd is an Associate Professor at Rutgers School of Social Work and co-author of Grief and Loss Across the Lifespan, a book that seeks to educate mental health clinicians on how to address the needs of someone experiencing grief and loss. 

Grief and loss experiences can affect a person’s feelings, behaviors, and thoughts. During a lifetime, we all experience multiple losses. Grief and loss therapy can help to offer support through the bereavement or transition process, regardless of whether or not an individual has a formal mental health diagnosis. There are many types of losses and talking to a therapist can allow one to process the meanings of these losses and the changes in identity that they can spur. Loss can include the loss of a job, home, functioning, and even the loss that occurs when there is a transition. One example of loss is when a child goes off to kindergarten or college, which may bring on grief as well as a longing for the past. Indeed, any change can be a form of loss of the way things once were. Cultural beliefs and traditions influence how people express grief. In some cultures, grief may be open and sociable. In other cultures, grief is experienced privately and quietly. Culture generally guides the time period in which family members are expected to grieve. In short, culture, the support of family and friends, and the adaptability to change all influence an individual’s ability to cope with loss. Having a therapist to accompany one through the process of change and reflection can be powerfully beneficial.

Disclaimer: The information shared in this podcast is not a substitute for getting help from a mental health professional.