How Can Circle of Life Help?

Our Bereavement team is comprised of trained professionals who support those struggling with grief and loss. We offer a variety of support groups, workshops and events to assist those who have experienced a loss. Please see below for a brief description of our services.

Overview

During your loved one’s illness, you may be too busy with caregiving to feel the full weight of your loss. After he or she passes away, your grief may come suddenly or happen over time, and the depth of your feelings may surprise you. It’s important that you get care for your emotional and spiritual health; understanding grief and the feelings attached to it are important steps in healing.                                  

Lean on us when you need help coping with your loss. Our Bereavement Team offers grief support groups, an individual consultation for bereavement care-planning, grief education and workshops, and an extensive grief resource library to help you navigate your grief and heal from the death of a loved one.

 

Support Groups for Adults

Our grief support groups are closed groups that occur weekly for 6 weeks. Pre-registration for group is required (see below). Grief support groups are offered for individuals grieving the death of a person whom they loved. Groups provide a safe and supportive environment for participants to express their feelings and learn about the grieving process. Our support groups are open to anyone in the community, regardless of whether or not they were on our hospice service. Registration is required in advance of the group. Please call 479-872-3364 or email jbassarear@nwacircleoflife.org to register. Please see our calendar for dates and times.

Community Support & Education

Community support: Our Bereavement Team can provide debriefings for organizations who have experienced the death of a coworker or staff member.

Community education: Our Bereavement team can provide trainings or presentations to your organization on topics related to grief and mourning and supporting children/adolescents in grief. Please contact our bereavement department at the telephone number listed below for a full description of our community support services.

There is no charge for any of our grief support services.

Questions? Please call us today at 479-750-6632 or email jbassarear@nwacircleoflife.org.

 

Children’s Resources

Children may experience grief differently than adults. You may not recognize the signs. Our resources can be vital in helping children cope. Let us help.

Our Caring Support Guide for Grieving Children and Teens is a valuable resource in providing support for young people.

 

 

 

 

 

These resources can also help your child cope with loss.
Grief Support for Children – Dougy Center
Sesame Street for Parents – Grief
What to Say and What Not to Say

 

Visit our Calendar of Events for more information about upcoming grief groups. To register for a support group, please download the Registration Form here.  Please email completed forms to Josh at jbassarear@nwacircleoflife.org

Support groups will not meet when schools are closed for inclement weather. Support groups will not be held on holidays observed by Circle of Life. Please call or check online to confirm.

 

For more information please contact our Grief Center at 479-750-6632.

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TO KNOW IF HOSPICE IS RIGHT FOR YOU.

What is Grief?

If you have experienced the death of someone you love or another significant event which has changed your life, you will likely experience grief. Grief is defined as the deep sorrow which results from loss, especially the death of a loved one. Understanding more about grief and the grieving process can help you heal, yet grief is frequently misunderstood. Many misconceptions exist in regard to how individuals process their grief and loss. In order to help you understand your grief, please see below a list of “frequently asked questions” about grief, adapted from Dr. Alan Wolfelt’s Center for Loss and Transition.
Q: Are “Grief” and “Mourning” the same thing?
A: Although we often use the words “grief” and “mourning” interchangeably, they are distinct concepts. Grief is comprised of the emotions we feel and thoughts we have when someone we love has died- sadness, loneliness, anger, emptiness, etc. Mourning refers to expressing that inner experience in an external way, such as talking about or otherwise expressing our feelings to friends, family, or in support groups or counseling.
Q: Should I be following the “Stages of Grief?” What happens if I do them out of order?
A: Dr. Elizabeth Kübler-Ross created the 5 Stage Model of Grief in 1969 in her book, On Death and Dying. Dr. Kübler -Ross’ model states that those who are grieving often experience denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance as part of the grieving process. Dr. Kübler-Ross also notes that although many people experience these emotions, there is no typical way to grieve, as there are no typical losses. The way we grieve is as unique as we are as people. Not everyone experiences these emotions, and certainly not always in that order. Grief is not always predictable or even logical; sometimes when we expect grief to be, it is often harder to cope.
Q: I heard it is better for me to “chin up” and push away my feelings. Will this help me get through grief faster?
A: Unfortunately, our society is one in which death, dying, and grief is not openly discussed. In fact, many bereaved people feel as though they are pressured to “move on” or “get over” grief very quickly. When those who are grieving do not openly mourn – by “suffering in silence,” “being strong,” or refusing to cry–they are often praised. Conversely, those who openly mourn may be seen as “weak,” “crazy,” or “selfish.” When we attempt to repress or hide what we are feeling, it can make us feel worse. If we do not receive any validation for what we are feeling, we can start to feel like we are “going crazy,” or that something is wrong with us. In order to heal, it is often best to give our emotions expression and not to ignore them.
Q: Is it true that tears are a sign of weakness or would make me look weak?
A: Again, in our society people (especially men) are often discouraged from showing any strong emotion like tears or sadness. Often, when our families and friends see us crying, they want to help us feel better but may feel helpless to do so. They may say things like “crying won’t help” or “emotions like these won’t bring your loved one back,” which in turn may make us feel guilty for showing tears. In truth, crying can often be a powerful release of emotions, and can demonstrate to others that we need extra support. Tears are more a sign of the love you had for the deceased, rather than a sign of weakness.
Q: I just want to get over these feelings as soon as possible. How can I do that?
A: A question the bereaved hear very frequently is “are you better yet?” or “are you over it yet?” Saying we will “get over” something implies that our lives will return to the way they were. After someone we loved has died, our lives are forever changed. It seems we do not “get over” the death of loved one, but rather adjust to our lives without that person. Over time, we will slowly reconstruct our lives without the presence of our loved one; this is not something that happens all at once, or overnight, but one day at a time. We will come to understand that our loved one will never be forgotten, and will always hold a special place in our lives. We will also begin to move forward, and create a new future for ourselves.
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