How to support a 22 year old young woman who has lost her grandfather, in another city, two weeks ago, due to COVID-19?
The loss of a close family member is difficult and each person may respond and grieve in their own way. No one way is better than the other. As a counsellor, you can create a space for her to share all her feelings in her own time; shock, sadness, regrets, guilt or anger, as she tries to make sense of her loss. One of the things that could help her is talking about and sharing memories of her grandfather. This unusual situation has meant she could not travel to be with her family and participate in any rituals. You could encourage her to talk about the circumstances of this unexpected loss, due to COVID-19. In these uncertain times, it may be a while before she can travel. Staying connected with her family and reaching out to friends for support over phone and video calls can bring some comfort. Perhaps you could guide her to to find a way to remember and pay tribute to her grandfather as a means of coping with the pain. Due to the COVID-19 situation, she may have her own anxieties and difficulties, so you could offer some counselling support for these concerns as well. If you feel that she is having continued difficulties with sleep or appetite, experiencing consistent sadness, tiredness or exhaustion, staying away from others and not feeling better, you could help her get more intensive mental health evaluation and support.
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