Bereavement

Bereavement Support

Don't be on your own. Pick up the phone.

Bereavement Support

Bereavement is an experience that involves your whole being:

•Your emotions: sadness, anxiety, shock, guilt, anger.

•Your body: low energy, loss of appetite, disturbed sleep, fatigue, dry mouth.

•Your behaviour: being absent minded, searching for or seeing the person you have lost, visiting places of significance, social withdrawal or attempting to deny what has happened in any number of ways.

•Your thoughts and beliefs: disbelief, confusion, preoccupation, hallucinations, existential crisis.

Your bereavement will take its own time. There are no short cuts. Eventually, you’ll regain your balance and feel better than you do now. However, your life will have changed, so you will be somewhat different. Sometimes this is referred to as ‘finding a new normal’. As well as this, feelings of bereavement can temporarily come back even many years later, such as when visiting your loved one’s grave, reading an old letter or on a special anniversary such as a birthday.

Other ways of thinking about bereavement

We often use the term ‘bereavement’ to refer to life events other than loss by death. Bereavement can also refer to the process or journey you go through to adjust to the loss of something of value, such as your health or your job, an important life role like being a parent, or even the loss of treasured possessions, such as your family photos being lost or stolen. You can also have feelings of bereavement when you are separated from someone or something for a period of time. Here, though the loss is temporary, there may still be painful emotions to work through.

You Can Access Support In A Number Of Ways:

Call Our Helpline - 0300 888 3853 (7 days a week, 365 days a year)

The telephone Helpline is available between 9am and 9pm seven days a week.  Many of our clients feel a huge sense of relief at being able to talk to our trained support team and realise that they no longer have to cope on their own.

Email Us

Sometimes picking up the phone can feel too difficult so sending an email can be a good way of getting in touch with us.  Some clients prefer communicating via email as it gives them a structured way of organising their thoughts and processing their feelings.  Please click here to send us a message.

Email, phone & Zoom Support

If you are based near our office in High Wycombe we are happy to meet you for a chat.  You can simply call us to arrange a time to come and see us.

Due to COVID-19, these support sessions are currently being held online. Please email us at office@drugfam.co.uk for further information

Attend Our Quarterly Support Groups

Four times a year we hold a support group in our High Wycombe office.  It is an opportunity to connect with others who have lost someone to substance misuse.  The groups are facilitated by Peter Cartwright, a counsellor who specialises in working with those bereaved by addiction, and are split into two parts. One half of the afternoon is used to learn about a particular issue, such as trauma while the second half is an opportunity to talk to other group members about your experiences.

Yearly Conference

We host a yearly bereavement conference to both support those who have been bereaved by addiction, as well as to remember the person they’ve lost. The conference involves talks from numerous guest speakers, group participation activities to talk about your experiences, and time to remember your loved ones.

Our bereavement conference page can be found here.

You can also have a look through some of the programmes from past conferences: 2018, 2019, 2020.

Our counsellor Peter Cartwright who leads all our bereavement groups and the annual conference has recently published an excellent book Supporting People Bereaved Through a Drug or Alcohol Related Death

The book can be purchased at the following links:

https://www.jkp.com/uk/. The code Y20 can be used with the above link to receive a 10% discount on the book.

https://www.foyles.co.uk/

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Download our 'Bereaved through substance abuse and alcohol' Handbook

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