Home > Emotional Issues > Questionnaire: Do You Need Bereavement Counselling?

Questionnaire: Do You Need Bereavement Counselling?

By: Beth Morrisey MLIS - Updated: 22 Nov 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Bereavement Counselling Grief Emotions

In the aftermath of a death it is perfectly normal to cycle through many different emotions. Feelings of sadness, frustration, anger, denial, guilt and even relief can all be typical of those who are grieving. Even when people know this, however, there are those who will not recognise when their emotions are making a major impact on their lives. Bereavement counselling can help people work through their grief, resolve any lingering conflicts and come to terms with their new lives and selves.

To help you determine if you need bereavement counselling we have put together the following questionnaire. Answer each of the 12 questions below with "yes" or "no". Total your answers and match the number of "yes" answers to the explanations at the end to find out if you need bereavement counselling.

1. Have your sleeping patterns changed considerably since the death of your loved one?
2. Has your weight changed considerably since the death of your loved one?
3. Have you experienced great or regular confusion since the death of your loved one?
4. Have you been unable to stop crying since the death of your loved one?
5. Have you been unable to concentrate since the death of your loved one?
6. Have others told you that you are not coping well since the death of your loved one?
7. Have you had suicidal thoughts since the death of your loved one?
8. Have you thought of harming yourself or others since the death of your loved one?
9. Have you been unable to make decisions since the death of your loved one?
10. Have you felt uncontrollable rage since the death of your loved one?
11. Have you experienced physical pain since the death of your loved one?
12. Have you worried about your thoughts or behaviour since the death of your loved one?

Do You Need Bereavement Counselling?

If you answered "yes" to between one and four questions then you most likely do not need bereavement counselling. It seems as though you have acknowledged your thoughts and feelings about the death of your loved one, and that you are working through them in healthy ways. If you don't agree, however, or you feel that you would still like the support of others or the chance to speak with someone non judgemental, then you might want to investigate individual or group bereavement counselling anyway. If you've ever had suicidal thoughts or thoughts of harming yourself or others as related to your grief then you should seek professional help immediately.

Yes to 5 -8

If you answered "yes" to between five and eight questions then you might need bereavement counselling. It is very easy for grief to spiral out of control or take over your life, and bereavement counselling could help you better understand your emotions and what you can do to work through them and eventually overcome them. Bereavement counselling can also be a great, safe place for you to discuss your loved one, his or her death, the role (s)he played in your life and how you would like your life to take shape in the future - both the positive and negative aspects of all. It may not seem like your life has been impacted greatly yet, but attending bereavement counselling could keep it from being impacted irreversibly in the future. Please seek help immediately if you feel that you are a danger to yourself or others.

Yes to 9 or more

If you answered "yes" to nine or more questions then you most likely need bereavement counselling. You have obviously experienced great changes in your life due to your grief, many of which may keep you from enjoying full physical or emotional health. Your days, and possibly your night as well, seem to be dominated by the loss of your loved one. In order to better move forward, to work through your grief and put together plans for your future, bereavement counselling can be an important first step. If you believe that your physical health or safety is in danger then don't delay in seeking out bereavement counselling services. Cruse Bereavement Care and the British Association of Counselling are both excellent starting points for finding a bereavement counsellor or support group.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Hi. My mum got diagnosed sept 12th 2016 Acute myeloid leukaemia passed away 10th July 2017..im heart broken. I get so angry, I seem to find everyday a struggle. Me and mum went everywhere together the way this disease took her. How ive managed to stay working and cope with the stresses and the way I get spoken to at work I'm getting defensive. I feel i need bereavement counselling. Help.
Jac - 22-Nov-17 @ 8:24 PM
Annaboys3 - Your Question:
My mom passed away February 22nd of this year the same day I gave birth to my daughter I feel like she did wait for me to make sure we was ok but I feel so guilty for having my daughter the same day but I know she would of probably of hanged on till I did give birth it's all still raw and now my daughter is babbling and saying Nanna it makes me cry my mom passed away from sepsis through a water infection it all happened so quick she had been ill for a while but cus I was heavily pregnant I feel guilty not seeing her has much as I should of I've put on loads of weight and it's getting to a point I don't wanna go out and see people in case they look at me and pull faces

Our Response:
Guilt is a natural stage of grieving, so please don't worry about these feelings. You have had so much to cope with, losing your mother and having a new baby...theses are both major events in your life. You do need to talk to someone about this, if you become more depressed it will have an adverse effect on your daughter and family. Counselling or support from local bereavement support groups, should really help. Take it slowly, don't worry about what people think about you, just do what you know is best for your and your daughter.
FacingBereavement - 17-Nov-17 @ 10:48 AM
My mom passed away February 22nd of this year the same day I gave birth to my daughter i feel like she did wait for me to make sure we was ok but I feel so guilty for having my daughter the same day but I know she would of probably of hanged on till I did give birth it's all still raw and now my daughter is babbling and saying Nanna it makes me cry my mom passed away from sepsis through a water infection it all happened so quick she had been ill for a while but cus I was heavily pregnant I feel guilty not seeing her has much as I should of I've put on loads of weight and it's getting to a point I don't wanna go out and see people in case they look at me and pull faces
Annaboys3 - 16-Nov-17 @ 2:54 AM
Caz - Your Question:
My husband died 6 months ago. Shortly before he passed, we had separated. This was a decision that haunts me. He had copd, emphysema and was on oxygen. A lot of this was due to his addiction to heroin. We had been married for 27 years and everything was fine until 1996 when he became addicted to heroin. I stood by him through it all because I loved him and he was Father to our 2 children. However he started a methadone programme in 2000 and I thought this would be the end to raids on our house and all the other problems associated with his addictions. However he started to lie constantly and I was constantly found proof that he was still taking heroin. So last year, despite the fact that he was very Ill, I asked him to leave the family home. I had suffered a stroke in December 2015 and it had all become too much for me.My daughter and son had left home and I thought this was the only thing I could do.We still loved each other and the day he died I was with him. It was very traumatic and paramedics worked on him for what seemed like an eternity. It wasn't until 2 months ago, after an inquest that his death was 'drug related.I am so full of guilt, although he lied constantly I still loved him. I forgave him for the way he chose to die but can't get over it. He died on Sunday April 2nd and I still feel so guilty that I asked him to leave.

Our Response:
Please do seek help through counselling or support groups. Your husband was an addict and you as a non-addict could not control this, so don't allow guilt, (while a natural part of the grieving process) to consume you.
FacingBereavement - 25-Oct-17 @ 12:59 PM
My dad passed away three years ago next month. It was during this time that my mother-in-law and close friend also passed away. I feel a mess and seem consumed with all of this. My dad's passing was sudden and unexpected and I feel sick and still have feelings of disbelief at this whole situation. I still picture the day we found out, hospital visit, funeral etc. I've neverexperienced bereavement before and feel that I'm just coasting though each day. Our lives were perfect before all of this and now it feels like hard work getting through each day. I don't know how to improve things.
Joy - 24-Oct-17 @ 6:01 PM
samh- Your Question:
I lived with my farher of 60 when he passed last November. We were incredibly close. It was an ordeal to say the least but I’ve felt as though I was making good progress got a promotion at work got a place of my own however I’ve observed a distinct and radical change in my personality. I’ve clearly gone through the conventional stages of grief I mean I was a mess every night for the first six months. I push my bedtime as far as feasibly can and I can’t seem to be the outgoing person I was before my loss I ignore all of my close friends for no good reason I shut out family and no longer feel passionate about much at all anymore. I feel empty and am convinced this is just my personality now as a product of my trauma

Our Response:
Don't feel resigned to a "personality change" as you describe it. It is a "stage" as you say in the grief process. You can get help, from counselling, therapy and local support groups. You may feel like you have no energy or desire to do so but it will help, slowly but very surely. Take tentative steps towards doing this, don't expect overnight success. Talk gradually to your friends and family but be gentle with yourself. Take care and let us know how you get on.
FacingBereavement - 24-Oct-17 @ 2:36 PM
My husband died 6 months ago. Shortly before he passed, we had separated. This was a decision that haunts me. He had copd, emphysema and was on oxygen. A lot of this was due to his addiction to heroin. We had been married for 27 years and everything was fine until 1996 when he became addicted to heroin. I stood by him through it all because I loved him and he was Father to our 2 children. However he started a methadone programme in 2000 and I thought this would be the end to raids on our house and all the other problems associated with his addictions. However he started to lie constantly and I was constantly found proof that he was still taking heroin. So last year, despite the fact that he was very Ill, I asked him to leave the family home. I had suffered a stroke in December 2015 and it had all become too much for me. My daughter and son had left home and I thought this was the only thing I could do. We still loved each other and the day he died I was with him. It was very traumatic and paramedics worked on him for what seemed like an eternity. It wasn't until 2 months ago, after an inquest that his death was 'drug related. I am so full of guilt, although he lied constantly I still loved him. I forgave him for the way he chose to die but can't get over it. He died on Sunday April 2nd and I still feel so guilty that I asked him to leave.
Caz - 23-Oct-17 @ 9:01 AM
I lived with my farher of 60 when he passed last November. We were incredibly close. It was an ordeal to say the least but I’ve felt as though I was making good progress got a promotion at work got a place of my own however I’ve observed a distinct and radical change in my personality. I’ve clearly gone through the conventional stages of grief I mean I was a mess every night for the first six months. I push my bedtime as far as feasibly can and I can’t seem to be the outgoing person I was before my loss I ignore all of my close friends for no good reason I shut out family and no longer feel passionate about much at all anymore. I feel empty and am convinced this is just my personality now as a product of my trauma
samh - 22-Oct-17 @ 3:22 AM
Tina - Your Question:
I lost my husband of 40 years a year and a half ago. I feel totally lost without him. I still have his cloths and things I can't get rid of anything I have it in my head he is coming home I find it easier not to think of him so I carry on with life pretending to every onethat I'm ok I have locked him away in my heart sometimes I do open my heart but it hurts so much. I work 1o hours a day to keep me busy. I hate weekends. I have a big family and they are amazing.but I can be in a room full of them but still feel lonely.

Our Response:
40 years is an incredibly long time to be with someone, we can understand how much it must hurt. Please do try and open up, keeping it locked away will only mean permanent pain for you. Look for local bereavement support groups and charities that you can turn to if you don't feel ready to open to your loved ones.
FacingBereavement - 16-Oct-17 @ 12:39 PM
I lost my husband of 40 years a year and a half ago. I feel totally lost without him . I still have his cloths and things I can't get rid of anything I have it in my head he is coming home I find it easier not to think of him so I carry on with life pretending to every onethat I'm ok I have locked him away in my heartsometimes I do open my heart but it hurts so much . I work 1o hours a day to keep me busy . I hate weekends .I have a big family and they are amazing.but I can be in a room full of thembut still feel lonely ...
Tina - 13-Oct-17 @ 10:34 PM
Foamy - Your Question:
My husband died last year,I was already suffering from depression so when this happened,the bottom just fell out of my world,we had been married for fourty five years and know that he has so gone I just don't know what to do with myself.people expect me to be the same as I was, but I can't I feel like a big part of me has died and I don't think I will ever be the same person that I was,I feel crushed.

Our Response:
Please do try and seek help from local support groups or a counsellor etc. The list of organisations below in the response to @Ladyejo are all very good places to try. We're sure noone expects you to be the same, but they probably do all want you to be happy again at some point in your life, even if it's not happy in the way you were when your husband was alive.
FacingBereavement - 26-Sep-17 @ 12:23 PM
My husband died last year,I was already suffering from depression so when this happened,the bottom just fell out of my world,we had been married for fourty five years and know that he has so gone I just don't know what to do with myself.people expect me to be the same as I was, but I can't I feel like a big part of me has died and I don't think i will ever be the same person that I was,I feel crushed.
Foamy - 24-Sep-17 @ 3:55 PM
I'm Jamie i lost my fiancé to suicide on the 16th August. She had mental health issues of Borderline personality disorder unfortunately i have ADHD so we argued a lot. Anyway due to the arguments between us she would rage and hurt me with words and violence and i would act in self defence and have to push her away from me unless i was able to get out in one piece i would have to go to parents houses.This always happened after she drank at night in the day she was the most loving,caring,compassionate woman who loved me dearly never meetanother like her.
Jamiew - 11-Sep-17 @ 9:21 PM
Ladyejo - Your Question:
I lost my husband, best friend and soul mate 18 weeks ago. Raymond found out he had cancer on the 16th March and 6 weeks later on the 1st May he passed away.I am totally heartbroken. I'm at a loss. We were married for 34 happy years.He was buried as he wished but I cant stop thinking of him in the dark. All alone. Does he think ive abandoned him. I miss him so much.

Our Response:
Please try not to project any guilt or blame on yourself; you have not abandoned anyone. As we've said to other readers, it will really help if you talk to someone - a counsellor or local support group about this. You can find various contacts such as:
This directory of bereavement counsellors
Grief Encounter
Way Out
The Loss Foundation
Age UK
Cruse Bereavement Charity
FacingBereavement - 6-Sep-17 @ 1:57 PM
I lost my husband, best friend and soul mate 18 weeks ago. Raymond found out he had cancer on the 16th March and 6 weeks later on the 1st May he passed away. I am totally heartbroken. I'm at a loss. We were married for 34 happy years. He was buried as he wished but I cant stop thinking of him in the dark. All alone. Does he think ive abandoned him. I miss him so much.
Ladyejo - 4-Sep-17 @ 8:42 PM
I lost my mum 7weeks a go I miss her so much not many days go by I don't cry can be on a bus when I'm ironing any time I don'tsleepat work I want to scream at customers when they moan about a faulty toaster .my whole life has changed I don't know how to sort it
Scottie - 31-Aug-17 @ 3:35 AM
I lost my eldest sister 3 weeks ago. She was 62 and passed away following a short battle with lung cancer. I am 54. I also lost my dad 4 years ago to cancer. Losing my sister has been a huge shock and we are devastated. I was very close to my sister, as am to my other sister, who is 61. How can I get through the grieving process?
Ang - 23-Aug-17 @ 10:43 PM
Dad passed away January and having a hard time getting over him .
Taff - 16-Aug-17 @ 9:41 PM
I lost my dog after 141/2 years. I absolutely adored him and he was always with me. He had a great personality and was much loved. We finally had to have him put to sleep as he couldn't walk. I know it was the only way but it felt wrong. I held him as he died. I have lost my dad and best friend and coped well with their deaths as I have a strong faith and believe that they are with God. However, I'm not sure where dogs go hen they die. I cry most days and am not the same person I was. I was always happy and optimistic, now I feel fearful of losing my husband too and am struggling. What can I do? It seems trivial to mourn a dog so much
Ju - 21-Jul-17 @ 3:14 PM
sad - Your Question:
I am nearly 34 years old. I was adopted when I was born. My family is the only family I have known. I loss my dad at the end of Dec 2016. The call was unexpected and alarming and it literally pulled me to the ground. I was in complete and utter shock. The entire trip to hometown I kept blacking out from reality. My dad is survived by my mom, my brothers and their family, and me and mine. Since he has passed the pervasive and lasting emotional thoughts in my own insecurity and grief is that I am somehow officially orphaned and no longer legitimately part of my family. To be fair and clear, my mom and brothers have not moved in this way at all, it is all in my head. On top of the emotional mental battles I have had severe health issues. I have had cycles of flu-like symptoms and exhaustion for four months. The people close to me say that I am within normal grieving process, and that each of us process loss differently. I just feel so overwhelmed. All of my rational and reasoning life, my dad was my closest friend and mentor, not just an authority figure. I can't put it fully into words, but it was more than most parent -child relationships ever achieve. I sincerely feel like I have lost a part of my person. I do not wish this anguish on even an enemy.

Our Response:
This is part of the grieving process. You can help yourself by accessing counselling services and/or local support groups. It may help you to simply share your thoughts with someone else who may have had a similar experience.
FacingBereavement - 2-May-17 @ 12:48 PM
I am nearly 34 years old. I was adopted when I was born. My family is the only family I have known. I loss my dad at the end of Dec 2016. The call was unexpected and alarming and it literally pulled me to the ground. I was in complete and utter shock. The entire trip to hometown I kept blacking out from reality. My dad is survived by my mom, my brothers and their family, and me and mine. Since he has passed the pervasive and lasting emotional thoughts in my own insecurity and grief is that I am somehow officially orphaned and no longer legitimately part of my family. To be fair and clear, my mom and brothers have not moved in this way at all, it is all in my head. On top of the emotional mental battles I have had severe health issues. I have had cycles of flu-like symptoms and exhaustion for four months. The people close to me say that I am within normal grieving process, and that each of us process loss differently. I just feel so overwhelmed. All of my rational and reasoning life, my dad was my closest friend and mentor, not just an authority figure. I can't put it fully into words, but it was more than most parent -child relationships ever achieve. I sincerely feel like I have lost a part of my person. I do not wish this anguish on even an enemy.
sad - 1-May-17 @ 7:01 PM
Hi I lost my son suddenly 12 years ago on holiday abroad he was disabled but was shocked when he died I haven't been able to come to terms with it, I have still worked through this and just seem to block it out until anniversaries then it takes weeks to get over them
Mau - 22-Apr-17 @ 1:13 PM
I lost my mum 11 weeks ago, she was my best friend and she had fought cancer for the last 3.5 years. I feel lost without her, I get no joy out of anything, the only thing keeping me going are my young children but I find myself snapping at them and everyone else all the time
Kdoo - 18-Apr-17 @ 9:07 PM
TC - Your Question:
I am 55 and just before Christmas I lost my step dad of 53+years. I helped him a lot through his years of treatment and feel I let him down. I got him home to die. But can't quite get to grips with life without him. He was a wonderful man who was liked by everyone. Although I am married with children and grandchildren I would happily have taken his place. I am disabled and useless. He was still very active and looked after mum. I feel so crap (sorry)

Our Response:
Please don't feel so bad about yourself or useless. Yes your stepfather did care for you and your mother and it's very difficult to lose someone who was liked to by all and on whom everyone relied so much. That doesn't mean the love and care you give your children/grandchildren is in any way diminished. Please talk about this to those around you and if necessary, contact local bereavement support groups or access some counselling. Things will never be the same, of course they won't, but there is still a lot of life to look forward to with the rest of your family and your friends.
FacingBereavement - 11-Apr-17 @ 11:50 AM
I am 55 and just before Christmas I lost my step dad of 53+years. I helped him a lot through his years of treatment and feel I let him down. I got him home to die. But can't quite get to grips with life without him. He was a wonderful man who was liked by everyone. Although I am married with children and grandchildren I would happily have taken his place. I am disabled and useless. He was still very active and looked after mum. I feel so crap(sorry)
TC - 9-Apr-17 @ 5:54 PM
My husband recently passed due to overdose on prescription pills although there is dispute over whether it was intentional or not. Our 12 year old daughter is finding it very hard also. Would bereavement counselling help?
Brown - 2-Mar-17 @ 6:13 PM
Notcopingwell - Your Question:
My mom passed away 7 years ago at age 60 of cervical cancer. I was her primary caregiver for the one year that she fought for her life and passed. I am not coping well yet. I have gained 100 pounds, have nightmares every night that I can't find her. I can't talk about her without breaking down. She was my best friend, an amazing mom and grandma. She was taken too soon. I feel like a shell of what I once was. I feel I should find more joy in my kiddos than I do. I have no motivation to participate in most life activities. Is this normal grief stuff or should I seek counseling?

Our Response:
It is normal grief, but you do need some help to deal with the grief. Counselling will help, as will joining a support group etc. Your doctor may be able to refer you for counselling and your local Citizens' Advice will be able to find you local support groups.
FacingBereavement - 29-Nov-16 @ 11:19 AM
My mom passed away 7 years ago at age 60 of cervical cancer.I was her primary caregiver for the one year that she fought for her life and passed.I am not coping well yet.I have gained 100 pounds, have nightmares every night that I can't find her.I can't talk about her without breaking down.She was my best friend, an amazing mom and grandma.She was taken too soon.I feel like a shell of what I once was.I feel I should find more joy in my kiddos than I do.I have no motivation to participate in most life activities.Is this normal grief stuff or should I seek counseling?
Notcopingwell - 28-Nov-16 @ 10:10 AM
hi there it is coming up to 2 years since i lost my dad to lunch cancer, it took 51days from being told to him passing away. i have 2 children 7&12. i am struggling to keep my emotions together, i keep everything bottled in..me & my husband argue nearly on a daily basis & i know im pushing him away...and my friends. its affecting my job, my mum has left her job & she has changed. im struggling to control my emotions, i dont know how to deal with them...i feel sometimes im better of where my dad is!! i just dont know what to do anymore..please help!
hannah - 26-Nov-16 @ 7:41 PM
Darrin - Your Question:
I lost my mom in 2013 which was my best friend to unexplained death well we was told she died of heart failure but we think it was neglected by the nursing home she was in and is closed down permnately but I find myself sneaking around I swing pain killers for pains I never had before I take aleve pm to sleep every night don't socialize a lot and my husband and 2 sons say I need couseling

Our Response:
It does sound as though counselling will help you. First, go to you GP and tell him about the pain killers. The GP will be able ot help with both that, and a referral for some counselling.
FacingBereavement - 9-Nov-16 @ 12:27 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Jac
    Re: Questionnaire: Do You Need Bereavement Counselling?
    Hi. My mum got diagnosed sept 12th 2016 Acute myeloid leukaemia passed away 10th July 2017..im heart…
    22 November 2017
  • FacingBereavement
    Re: How Grief Affects Your Relationships
    Neil - Your Question:5 years ago my father passed away due to his long standing alcohol addiction it's something I have…
    22 November 2017
  • Steve
    Re: Inheriting Property
    Ny wifes mother left her and her sister the house. The will states that her unmarried partner is allowed to live in the house until he dies.…
    21 November 2017
  • FacingBereavement
    Re: What if There is No Will?
    ks - Your Question:Hi Im divorced for over 10 yrs, but I have children with my ex, he is living with someone else, but concerned his…
    21 November 2017
  • FacingBereavement
    Re: Coping with Multiple Deaths
    Sprout - Your Question:My only brother shot and killed my twin 16 Year old Nieces 4-days before their 17th, Birthday and then shot…
    20 November 2017
  • Sprout
    Re: Coping with Multiple Deaths
    My only brother shot and killed my twin 16 Year old Nieces 4-days before their 17th, Birthday and then shot and killed himself. One…
    19 November 2017
  • Anie
    Re: What if There is No Will?
    My dad who was a loner was diagnosed with dementia 1 1/2 years ago, my sister who didn't talk to him for years quickly took over POA…
    18 November 2017
  • Neil
    Re: How Grief Affects Your Relationships
    5 years ago my father passed away due to his long standing alcohol addiction it's something I have dealt with my whole…
    18 November 2017
  • FacingBereavement
    Re: What if There is No Will?
    hapla - Your Question:I have been paying back 7 different debt companies £1 month for years as I got myself in to trouble with a bad…
    17 November 2017
  • FacingBereavement
    Re: Questionnaire: Do You Need Bereavement Counselling?
    Annaboys3 - Your Question:My mom passed away February 22nd of this year the same day I gave birth to…
    17 November 2017
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the FacingBereavement website. Please read our Disclaimer.