We offer bereavement and grief support for families in need

Bereavement and grief support services

When families and loved ones help those suffering from chronic illness, they may experience emotional stress. In addition to patients, hospice caregivers focus on the well-being of the patients’ families too.

How can Hospice of Southwest Ohio help with grieving?

People who care for hospice patients often experience grief. This can occur once the patient passes — but also before — in what’s called “anticipatory grief.” It’s normal to grieve the death of a loved one before, during and after it happens.

Our team offers grief counseling services and bereavement support for caregivers of hospice patients. Grief can lead to feelings of anger, depression, guilt, sadness and other emotional, and even physical, issues if left untreated, so it’s important to address the feelings early on.

How do our volunteers help caregivers with grieving?

Many of Hospice of Southwest Ohio’s volunteers have gone through hospice caregiving themselves. This gives them a unique perspective so they can truly empathize with those who are grieving.

Our team can help loved ones express feelings in a healthy way, thus moving through the grieving process in a healing manner. From meditation to prayer to relaxation exercises, grief counseling can help caregivers along their restorative path.

What are the signs of grief?

Grief affects people in many different ways. The way it makes people act and feel depends on the situation and other emotional factors. Here are some symptoms people may experience with grief:

Emotional Grief

  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Edginess/irritability
  • Guilt
  • Passive resignation

Social Grief

  • Anger that others’ lives are still going on as normal
  • Feeling detached
  • Feeling needy or clingy with others
  • Not feeling like socializing with others
  • Wanting to be alone

Physical Grief

  • Crying
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Eating too much
  • Loss of appetite
  • Reckless or self-destructive activities

Spiritual Grief

  • Frustration toward God or a higher power
  • Looking toward faith for solace
  • Questioning why the disease/death happened
  • Questioning the meaning of life, faith, etc.

What are the stages of grief?

According to Elizabeth Kübler-Ross, a Swiss-American psychiatrist, there are five stages of grief. Since everyone feels grief differently, the stages of grief aren’t necessarily experienced in a specific order (and there may be more), but they can include:


People may have trouble dealing with their new reality or feel numb. They may experience problems going about their normal life and activities.


This includes constantly revisiting what they could have done differently — or making “deals” with God in effort to change the situation.


Many people feel anger toward themselves, family, friends, doctors, God, life in general, etc.


Those who are grieving may feel anxiety, fear, loneliness, regret, sadness — and in general, overwhelmed with loss.


When people finally start to accept their new reality and move on, they may finally feel a sense of hope and understanding that they’re healing.

It’s normal for people who have reached the Acceptance phase to revisit other phases, especially during times where they are reminded of the loved one who has since passed on. This is common during birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions.

Educational opportunities for grieving caregivers

Hospice of Southwest Ohio offers the following grief support courses:

  • Children and Grief
  • Grief, Loss and Bereavement
  • Understanding Grief

It's normal to grieve. Now it's time to experience some healing.

Grieving is a common, normal thing to experience when caring for someone in hospice, and it’s okay to ask for help! Contact Hospice of Southwest Ohio today at (513) 770-0820, no matter the time or day.

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