Grief Counseling Certification Article on Guilt and Moving On

So many times in the mourning process, we feel held back due to loss.  The pain is one thing, but the guilt one can feel for looking forward can sometimes haunt an individual.  Conflicting emotions were relief but also regret meet, as well as love but also sadness.

Individuals after loss, must mourn the loss, but they must also move forward from it.  This does not entail forgetting the past.  One keeps the past loss close to heart, helping it transform and create the person one is, but this does not mean living in the past.  It means still living.  Whether this entails moving on to loving someone new, or finding joy in life again, one cannot feel these feelings betray the deceased.

Sometimes past loss guilts oneself from enjoying the present. Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification

One is not expected to continue to live in the past, but to move forward, embracing the loss, while also venturing forward to new things.  Adaptation and reconciliation to the loss manifests in someone who can still grieve the loss but find happiness in the new.   The loss will never cease, but it can coexist in a healthy way.

What’s Your Grief offers an excellent perspective on this.  In their article, “Conflicted Feelings in Grief: Reconciling the Present with What Might Have Been” by Eleanor Haley, this type of conflicting emotion of moving forward is addressed.  She states,

 “On a larger scale, people may feel guilty as they move forward in life and discover new purposes, make new connections, or find a sense of peace or happiness. Feeling okay in their life without their loved one feels like a betrayal.  The reality is that grief is so ongoing that it is impossible to wait for it to end before allowing yourself to experience anything positive. You will likely grieve in different ways forever, so you have to find a way to let it live alongside new purpose, meaning, and connections.”

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It is easy and natural to think of what may have been.  Part of the process is to think and remember, but this should not be something that haunts and prevents future relationships or future happiness.  One needs to move forward at one’s own pace, but conflicted emotions can prevent a person from appreciating the present.  It is critical to properly see loss in its perspective.  The loss is part of oneself and an important part but it cannot become an anchor that strips life away.  This is not betrayal, but part of being alive.  It is also something our beloved deceased would never wish for us.

Please also review AIHCP’s Grief Counseling Certification and see if it meets your academic and professional goals.  The program is online and independent study and open to qualified professionals seeking a four year certification in Grief Counseling.