I doubt there are many occasions where you do not remember a significant loved one who has died. The Wellbeing Service at ellenor hears thousands of stories of grief and bereavement, every one special, individual and different. Over the years, we have become very aware that when it comes to loss, there is no one-size-fits-all approach, so we have worked tirelessly to cater for all needs.
Some people feel they need help in the short days after a death – perhaps to plan a funeral or deal with questions that have arisen around why somebody has died. One of the first things ellenor does following a death is invite family in to discuss what has happened and guide people through the process of registering a death and dealing with funeral directors.
Then comes a period of bereavement, and there are as many ways of grieving as there are people who have lost somebody. At this point, we can offer one-to-one counselling to help carers explore some of the more unpleasant feelings associated with their grief. When people want to hear from others with a similar experience, we have Bereavement Cuppas, a chance to meet up and form friendships with those who really understand your loss. Our annual Lights of Love services offer an opportunity to come together with hundreds of other families to pause and reflect just before festivities begin each year.
We also support children who have lost a significant family member or friend. This might mean a day out with other children on one of our GEMS days, or a Children’s Remembrance Day where we encourage families to remember a child whose life has been cut short. Through the medium of music and play, we offer Music or Play Therapy, especially popular with our younger bereaved families.
There are also many, many people who do not seek out groups or counselling and choose instead to deal with their bereavement in their own way. This too is absolutely fine. However, if you are reading this and feel it is time to start talking about your loss, please consider speaking to ellenor.
- Dr Russ Hargreaves, Head of Wellbeing.