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Trauma/Grief and Loss

Trauma

Struggling to cope

Trauma is extreme stress that swamps a person’s capacity to cope leaving those affected by it unable to function normally. It is a subjective experience in that it is unique to the person experiencing it.

It can be a reaction to a one-time significant event or can be a reaction to repetitive events such as ongoing abuse. Trauma is defined by the experience of the person, and it is possible for two people to react in different ways to the same event.

Some trauma will require treatment by highly specialised therapy. In these instances, an appropriate referral will be made by StartPoint Counselling.

Some of the physical reactions associated with trauma are – Click to expand

Aches and pains such as headaches, backaches, stomach aches
Sudden sweating and/or heart palpitations
Changes in sleep patterns, appetite, and interest in sex
Constipation or diarrhea
Easily startled by noises or unexpected touch
More susceptible to colds and illnesses
Increased use of alcohol or drugs and/or overeating

Some of the emotional reactions associated with trauma are – Click to expand

Shock and disbelief
Fear and/or anxiety
Grief, disorientation, denial
Hyper-alertness or hypervigilance
Irritability, restlessness, outbursts of anger or rage
Emotional swings — like crying and then laughing
Nightmares
Flashbacks — feeling like the trauma is happening now
Feelings of helplessness, panic, feeling out of control
Increased need to control everyday experiences
Attempts to avoid anything associated with trauma
A tendency to isolate oneself
Feelings of detachment
Emotional numbing or restricted range of feelings
Difficulty trusting and/or feelings of betrayal
Difficulty concentrating or remembering
Feelings of self-blame and/or survivor guilt
Diminished interest in everyday activities or depression
Unpleasant memories resurfacing
Suicidal thoughts
Loss of a sense of order or fairness in the world; the expectation of doom and fear of the future
Anger towards religion or belief system; loss of beliefs

The emotional reactions to trauma are overwhelming and make it difficult for the individual to see how to help themselves. As trauma is an individual experience there is not a one size fits all solution to healing the effects of trauma. Counselling with an experienced, empathetic counsellor gives you the best chance of leading a productive, fulfilled life.

Vanessa Heal Specialises in both Grief and Loss and Trauma Counselling

Client Testimonial

“Vanessa has helped a lot of people I’ve worked with within the community through troublesome times in their lives, she’s been an inspiration to myself and others through her gift of being able to lighten the load of past and present issue’s people may have.. Very discreet and professional.. Thank you for the work you do for myself and others, keep up the excellent work Vanessa”

Trauma, loss, grief
Vanessa Heal

Grief and Loss

Grief, Loss, Sorrow

Grief is the expression of the feelings that you experience when something important to you is lost. This can include the loss of somebody close to you, the end of a relationship, the loss of employment or the loss of something that you love.

When you suffer loss, grief is a normal response. Grief is expressed in various ways including sadness, anger, shock and overwhelm. The effect of grief is not just limited to how you feel but can change the way that you think about things, your ability to make decisions and your ability to concentrate.

You may wonder if the pain will ever diminish. No one can tell you how to grieve or how long it will take, but it can help to talk about it and get support from the people who care about you.

The following stages of grief can be experienced

Not necessarily all of these stages will be experienced. The stages do not necessarily follow the order below. Stages can be experienced more than once as the grief resolves.

Denial, numbness, and shock: This stage protects the individual from the intensity of the loss. Numbness is a normal reaction to an immediate loss. To move through this stage the individual needs to come to accept that the loss has occurred. 

Bargaining: Involves thought about how the loss could have been avoided, specifically what could have been done differently. Unless this stage is resolved feelings of remorse or guilt may remain. 

Depression: This stage occurs in some people upon realising the extent of their loss. 

Anger: The feeling of helpless and powerless can give rise to anger. This anger can be an expression of the feeling of abandonment or anger at a higher power or toward life in general. 

Acceptance: Over time the individual comes to terms with how they feel and accept the fact that the loss has occurred. The loss can now be integrated into the individual’s life experience.

Transitioning through the stages of grief can be assisted by an empathetic counsellor.

Vanessa Heal Specialises in both Grief and Loss and Trauma Counselling

Client Testimonial

“Vanessa has helped a lot of people I’ve worked with within the community through troublesome times in their lives, she’s been an inspiration to myself and others through her gift of being able to lighten the load of past and present issue’s people may have.. Very discreet and professional.. Thank you for the work you do for myself and others, keep up the excellent work Vanessa”

Trauma, loss, grief
Vanessa Heal

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