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The Difference Between Counseling and Consolation

No one should go through grief alone. And that is the reason why any human civilization always includes a time for vigils and memorial services. It is not for the dead, for the dead does not require humans to pay respect. It is for the living. It is for people who love the dead to gather together, share their grief and console one another.

Yes, consolation is important during times of grief. But sometimes, it is not enough. Consolation is the act of helping alleviate grief, or provide solace. It can be given as a simple gesture like an embrace or words that provide warmth.

But consolation is temporary. After the initial feeling of alleviation, the sense of loss returns. If that loss is not that devastating, people in grief will recover and move on with their lives. But, for some people, it is difficult.

That is where counseling comes in. To console is to alleviate the pain, but to counsel is to provide a path for recovery. Grief counseling provides tools and processes that will help families make sense of the death of a loved one. It is only when they make sense of the death that acceptance follows. Without acceptance – the pain, the anger, the guilt continues to haunt them like a ghost.

Deaths of a loved can destroy health, marriages, career paths, and even life itself. Grief should not be taken lightly. So, if you truly care for someone who is grieving, sometimes consoling is not enough. Suggest counseling. It might just save him or her from destruction.

Wise Words

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Nature gave men two ends – one to sit on and one to think with. Ever since then man’s success or failure has been dependent on the one he used most
George R. Kirkpatrick

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Anyone can carry his burden, however hard, until nightfall. Anyone can do his work, however hard, for one day. Anyone can live sweetly, patiently, lovingly, purely, till the sun goes down. And this is all life really means.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Never make your home in a place. Make a home for yourself inside your own head. You’ll find what you need to furnish it – memory, friends you can trust, love of learning, and other such things. That way it will go with you wherever you journey.

-Tad Williams

“When you were born, you were crying and everyone around “When you were born, you were crying and everyone around you was smiling. Live your life so that when you die, you’re the one smiling and everyone around you is crying.”

-Unknown

I thought growing up was something that happened automatically as you got older. But it turns out it’s something you have to choose to do. – TV show Scrubs