After the loss of a loved one, people often attend wakes and funerals. Attending these allows people to grieve together, share memories, and reflect on what that person meant to them. Neighbors and friends often show their support by offering a helping hand. The extra help and ability to reflect on that person’s life allows people to feel supported and allows them to process and cope with the death of their loved one. However, not every loss is caused by a death.
When thinking of a loss people often think about things being done. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. An ambiguous loss is a type of loss that occurs without closure or understanding. People may feel the loss of a loved one who is physically present but psychologically gone or a loved one that is psychologically present but physically gone. Examples of an ambiguous loss are:
- A loss of a loved one where it is unknown if they are dead or alive
- People’s bodies that have been missing
- The loss of a loved one that has developed Alzheimer’s
- The loss of a loved ones that has developed an addiction
It is believed that ambiguous loss is the most stressful type of loss. Ambiguous loss has higher amounts of stress as there are no grieving rituals like wakes or funerals, society often lacks an understanding or acceptance of ambiguous loss, and people often search for answers that are hard to find. The best way to cope with ambiguous loss is finding ways to live with the ambiguity. When people find a meaning behind their loss, they can then find ways to cope.
If you are experiencing a loss Lighthouse Counseling is here to help. Visit our website to find a counselor that is right for you.
Keli Hinkemeyer earned her Master of Science degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from St. Cloud State University, MN after completing her Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Dependency and Community Psychology from St. Cloud State University, MN. She has a history of working with individuals who have spent time in the criminal justice system and are on parole. She has worked with individuals who have had an alcohol, substance, and behavioral addiction. Keli utilizes Gestalt, Cognitive Behavioral, Adlerian, and Motivational Interviewing techniques into her counseling sessions based on the individual’s needs.
Keli believes her role as the counselor is not to tell her clients what to do, instead assist them in their journeys. She believes in finding techniques clients can implement both in session and in the community that will help them achieve their personal goals.
Keli enjoys working with those that have or are impacted by:
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