National Center for Effective Mental Halth Consultation First Candle National Center for Cultural Competence Georgetown Center for Child and Human Development
 

introduction

When our love is not enough

Say to him: 'Long life to you! Good health to you and your household!
And good health to all that is yours!

I Samuel 25:6 NIV

The Need for Professional Bereavement Support

For some families, the loving support of family, clergy and other church members or support groups may not be enough to help them through their pain. For these families, outside help from bereavement support professionals is critical to their long-term well-being. Don’t forget that not only parents may need extra help. Grandparents, siblings, extended family, godparents and others deeply affected by the loss may also want to have more support.

When Do Families Need More Support?

There are a number of instances when families may want or need outside bereavement support services. These include:

  • When a family member already has mental health or substance use/abuse issues;
  • When the intensity of a family’s need for support is more than the church can provide;
  • When a family member or family as a whole has experienced more than one loss in the recent and distant past;
  • When the family has previously experienced pregnancy loss or the death of a baby or child;
  • When the family has other stresses such as loss of a job, illness in the family, domestic violence, etc.;
  • When one or more family members is showing signs of “complicated grief” (more information about complicated grief will follow); or
  • Whenever a family says they need more help.

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