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Grief affects most, if not all, humans at one point during their experience of life.  Grief can often be, but isn’t limited to, the loss of someone important to us. This is a very large and important aspect of grief.  However, at CIVIQ Health we acknowledge that grief is the loss of any experience, person, or aspects of our lives that impacts us when they are no longer present.  Here at CIVIQ Health we are aware and sensitive to struggles, frustrations, and stigma that struggle with loss and grief.  This could be a client who feels dejected due to having disenfranchised grief. 

Disenfranchised Grief

Disenfranchised Grief is a term that refers to any loss that is subject to stigma.  This can be a loss that cannot be mourned openly, or might be socially unacceptable to do so.  Clients who struggle with addiction may experience loss of peers, friends, or other relationships to the disease of addiction.  This may not be met with the same sympathies and supports of other losses.  Here at CIVIQ Health we hold all losses in the same regard and support the process of adjustment to the loss in parallel to other client needs to address relapse prevention and development of coping skills.

Grief and Loss Therapy

Typically, people may think grief and loss therapy occurs when clients struggle with a recent loss and it does not get any better in time where everyone else has “moved on”.  We at CIVIQ Health hold sacred the loss of clients and their loved ones and hope to be supportive in their grieving process.  Grief is a nuanced process, in which clinicians are available to hold space, explore feelings that may not be expressed otherwise, and discuss the loss and it’s impact on the individual.   Clinicians can use a number of different approaches to grief and loss therapy which can include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), mindfulness-based therapies, narrative therapies, logo therapies, existential therapies, or trauma informed therapies.  CIVIQ Health also addresses grief with Worden’s model in clinical and supportive approaches to address the tasks of grief.  These tasks, which explore and discuss aspects of the loss, experience the emotionality of the adjustment to the loss, discuss and plan new approaches to live with the loss, and finally encouraging the client to practice these new approaches that can help in the adjustment to the new reality.   Being able to feel, explore, practice, and adjust to the new reality of living can be difficult.  Doing so, while also addressing mental health and addiction challenges can provide more struggles in the process of adjusting to a new reality after a loss event.  That is why the staff at CIVIQ Health are dedicated to providing a supportive, comfortable, and safe environment to support the process of addressing loss-related issues and grief. 

Grieving as a Community

Grief often does not impact only one person.  Grieving can affect the community, the individual, as well as the family.   Family is an integral part of treatment at CIVIQ Health and providers, staff, and clinicians are dedicated to supporting the individual and including the family in this process; should the client and the family be willing.   Family members face struggles in how to support a loved one in their grief, especially if they are also addressing their own grief in the process.   Family grief therapy at CIVIQ Health is meant to be supportive and welcoming to the client to explore and express deep feelings of loss in the face of their new adjustment.  Incorporating family and other support in the grief recovery process is an important aspect of treatment which is both encouraged and treated with a reverence towards the persons story.  This process involves empowering the client to protect their story and engaging family in treatment where the client feels a sense of control and support to address grief in a productive way.

More Than One Way to Grieve

Everyone that has adjusted to a loss has done so to varying degrees.  Some lives are changed forever, while others are able to create a sacred place for their loss that does not have as large an impact.  Just as this can vary, so can expressions of grief vary.   Clients at CIVIQ Health are encouraged to express their grief, when they are ready, with trusted support members in ways that can include talk therapy, expressive arts therapy, body engaged therapies, and all clients and their families are invited to our Annual Over-Dose Awareness Event called A Night to Remember.  Our annual event makes a safe, supportive, and reverent space to remember the losses suffered specifically from the disease of addiction.   This is an open community event to also contribute to our surrounding neighbors both an opportunity to express or gain new experiences regarding lives lost to addiction.

CIVIQ Health asserts that all clients should be respected, empowered, and regarded as resilient and able to change.  When someone struggles with addiction, mental health, or life adjustments, CIVIQ Health hopes to be there in ways that help clients reach their goals while also respecting their struggles.