Dr. Alan Wolfelt is my favorite grief counselor and theorist. I use his Six Reconciliation Needs in a support group I facilitate and highly recommend any of his books – most of which are specific to your individual loss. His philosophy of counseling, which he calls ‘companioning’, guides my approach. I’ve often used the term “walk alongside” when explaining what I think bereavement counseling is all about. I’m no expert. You are. Your grief and your loss are unique to you and only you know what you are experiencing. Here’s an article he wrote explaining what he means by companioning:
For those of you who are now or who have been in bereavement counseling, I’d love to know what helped and what didn’t help. My clients tell me all the time that simply being able to tell their story and cry in front of someone is healing in and of itself. That knowing they are “normal” is hugely important as is knowing what to expect next. I invite you to share your story with me either in the comment section below or in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.