Working Through the Grief After a Wrongful Death

How does anyone even start dealing with wrongful death? It’s quite possible that people suffering this kind of loss will need to go outside their immediate circle of family and friends. Portland wrongful death attorneys often advise clients to seek out professional help to deal with grief after a wrongful death that can literally drive a person to despair and tear a family apart. In such cases, grief support groups can be a key part of the healing process.

Painful loss causes overwhelming grief and other, often uncontrollable emotions. This can be particularly true when a loved one is taken from us in tragic and unforeseen circumstances, and when wrongful death occurs through someone’s negligence, grief can often turn to anger and despair.

What is a grief support group after wrongful death?

Generally, these groups are made up of people who have experienced the same kind of tragedy you’re experiencing now. Because of this, they share the same thoughts, emotions and concerns, and can relate to other members of the group. People in grief support groups really do “know how you feel,” a phrase many grief-stricken people despise, because they feel no one could possibly understand what they’re going through. Most grief support groups are headed up by someone with professional training in dealing with grief, like a social worker, psychiatrist or psychologist.

How can grief counseling possibly help?

Portland wrongful death attorneys often meet people who have lost a family member in a car accident caused by a drunk driver. They will advise people who are suffering to seek out a support group made up of people who have suffered a similar fate—losing a loved one in horrible circumstances. Grief support groups listen to your expressions of anger, guilt, remorse, even hatred—things you’d have difficulty expressing to people who haven’t been through a similar experience to your own. You can say exactly how you feel to other members in your group, who will listen without judging you, and who can then share their own experiences and discuss ways to begin the healing process.

If absolutely nothing else is gained by attending a support group, you will learn that what you’re feeling is normal, not unnatural, and that others share in your grief. You’ll have the opportunity to talk about the person you’ve lost, and after awhile, you might be able to offer help and guidance to a newer member of the group.

How do I find the right support group?

All kinds of grief support groups exist. Some are for children who have lost parents. Others are for parents whose children have been killed in tragic circumstances. It’s also true that, in many cases, men and women grieve differently. There are mixed support groups, as well as all-men or all-women groups. Choose one that you feel will make you the least uncomfortable and try it out. No one will force you to stay if you don’t like the experience. However, if you feel like taking part in a grief support group might be helpful, there are a number of places you can start looking. Call your local hospital. They often have lists of local support groups and contact details. Churches and community organizations are also useful sources of information to point you in the right direction.

Remember, you are not weak…or alone!

One of the common misconceptions is that only weak or needy people use grief support groups. Nothing could be further from the truth. Grieving is a normal process for any human being. It’s vital to put pride and fear to one side, and it’s equally important to accept any help that may make the situation you’re in less painful. Grief counseling through support groups often offers the best chance of getting that help.

If someone you love has been killed through someone else’s negligence, get all the help you can find at this painful time. And when you feel up to it, talk to one of our experienced and understanding Portland wrongful death attorneys, who will explain the options available to you and your family. Call our office at 503-222-4411 with any questions.