It is easy to displace emotion. When it is more convenient, or less impactful, one may become angry with someone who is not the cause of the irritation. When grieving, it is sometimes also easier to take it out on the person presenting the bad news. Like all defense mechanisms, they can happen at the unconscious level.
It is important to understand emotion and grieving and when helping others, to expect a displacement of emotion. It is important to be understanding and ready to forgive when one acts emotionally during grief.
The article, “Understanding Displacement While Grieving” from Eleanor Haley and “Whats Your Grief” takes a closer look at displacement and how to deal with it as the griever and the one supporting the griever. The article states,
“Sometimes the displacement is obvious – you know exactly when and why it is happening. Other times you just find yourself being more irritable, annoyed, or angry at the people around you, even when they have done nothing wrong. It can be complicated because often your rational-brain knows that they haven’t done anything, while your emotional-brain can’t help but lash out. ”
To read the entire article, please click here
When dealing with emotions, it can become complicated and it is important as grief counselors to know that people react differently to grief and an array of emotions can flow. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it meets your professional goals. The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Grief Counseling.