Dublin based
Acupuncture & Shiatsu
Specialist

Grief

Grief

August 23rd, 2010 | Posted in Emotions+Stress

In Chinese Medical theory the lungs control respiration, dominate the qi, skin, and hair and are impacted by grief. Often times when we are making changes in our lives either through moving house or living area or ending a relationship, the lung can be weakened, especially if the change is sudden or there is resistance.  By treating the lungs and other emotional acupuncture points, acupuncture can assist the body, mind, and emotions to move through these transitions.

Grief can happen during any transitional period of life, not just when experiencing grief at the loss of a loved one. Whether it is bereavement, receiving catastrophic news,  life cycle changes, or just environmental changes during seasonal transitions our delicate organ, the lung, is most affected. The lungs distribute energy to the rest of the body as well as assisting in warming and moistening the muscles, skin, and hair.  During times of change and stress it is especially important to take time out and calm ourselves by breathing deeply. As we inhale, the lungs take in fresh oxygen and energy from the external environment and as we exhale, we release waste build up (carbon dioxide) from the internal body. This why proper breathing is so important.

“Grief Work” helps the bereaved through grief resolution. It begins when the honeymoon period is over, the friends have stopped calling, everyone thinks you should be over it, the court case is resolved, “closure” has been effected, and everything is supposed to be back to normal. It’s at this point that real grieving begins.¬† Bereavement¬† needs community support rather than counselling. The situation must be acknowledged fully. There should be no minimising or brushing it aside with well-meaning remarks such as: ‘Ah, sure, he was 78 and didn’t he have a good life.’¬† The loss and pain need to be recognised. The person needs to express it and to be heard. It is a time to sit and listen. It is not a time to ‘do’. It is not a time to advise.¬† Just sitting and listening without your personal ‘recollections’ or at other times, lamenting when the bereaved person is trying to take a break from their grief, is the best approach.¬† And this support needs to continue and be genuine support. The person will likely be grieving for some time‚ÄĒmonths, even a year or more and needs support throughout that time.

A common definition of Grief Work is summarized by the acronym: TEAR

T =  To accept the reality of the loss

E =   Experience the pain of the loss

A =  Adjust to the new environment without the lost object

R =  Reinvest in the new reality