GriefShare is a friendly, caring group of people who will walk alongside you through one of life’s most difficult experiences. You don’t have to go through the grieving process alone.
How GriefShare works
GriefShare seminars and support groups are led by people who understand what you are going through and want to help. You’ll gain access to valuable GriefShare resources to help you recover from your loss and look forward to rebuilding your life.
There are thousands of GriefShare grief recovery support groups meeting throughout the US, Canada, and in over 10 other countries. There’s one meeting near you!
It may be hard for you to feel optimistic about the future right now. If you’ve lost a spouse, child, family member, or friend, you’ve probably found there are not many people who understand the deep hurt you feel.
This can be a confusing time when you feel isolated and have many questions about things you’ve never faced before.
“Going to GriefShare feels like having warm arms wrapped around you when you’re shivering.”
GriefShare groups meet weekly to help you face these challenges and move toward rebuilding your life. Each GriefShare session has three distinct elements:
Video seminar with experts
Each week your GriefShare group will watch a video seminar featuring top experts on grief and recovery subjects. These videos are produced in an interesting television magazine format featuring expert interviews, real-life case studies, dramatic reenactments, and on-location video.
Support group discussion with focus
After viewing the video, you and the other group members will spend time as a support group, discussing what was presented in that week’s video seminar and what is going on in your lives.
Personal study and reflection
During the week you will have the opportunity to use your workbook for further personal study of the grieving process and to help sort out your emotions through journaling. Your group will spend time discussing questions and comments from the workbook study.
Who should come … who should not
GriefShare is for people grieving the death of a family member or friend. We understand that there are other losses in life that create feelings of grief. You might be experiencing a job loss, a divorce, estrangement from a child, or the loss of friends because of a move. This grief is real, but it is not the kind of grief discussed in GriefShare sessions. We encourage you to ask a pastor, counselor, or church leader for help in finding resources that will be of specific help in your situation. If you are going through separation or divorce, please consider participating in a DivorceCare program.
When to join a GriefShare group
You are welcome to begin attending the GriefShare group at any session. Each is “self-contained,” so you do not have to attend in sequence. You will find encouragement and help whenever you begin. You will be able to continue with GriefShare through the next 13-week cycle and view any of the videos you have not seen.
Being a part of a GriefShare grief recovery support group
“I’ve never been to a support group like this before. I don’t know what to expect.”
Most people quickly feel comfortable and accepted in their GriefShare group. They discover there are others who have the same kind of feelings they do and who understand the hurt they feel and the loss they have experienced. Here is an overview of the GriefShare experience:
You’ll probably feel a little nervous about going to GriefShare the first time. Those feelings go away quickly for most people, usually during the first session they attend. GriefShare is a warm, caring environment designed to help you.
You’ll discover there are people who understand your hurts, emotions, and painful experiences! When someone you love dies, it’s common to feel isolated. In GriefShare, you’ll find that you are not alone, that there are others who understand what you are going through.
You’ll learn helpful, practical information that will help you recover from the pain of grief and loss. The GriefShare DVD videos feature top experts on grief recovery subjects and case studies of people just like you, who have been through the grief experience.
You’ll have the chance to talk about your experiences. It can be very healing to tell others what you are going through. The support group sessions include a time to talk about what you’ve seen on the GriefShare videos and what is going on in your life. And while you have the opportunity to tell your story, there’s never pressure for you to do so if you don’t feel like it.
You’ll have a workbook for personal study and to write down things you’ve learned. The workbook provides opportunity for further study about the grief process and personal reflection about your grief. The weekly journaling questions help you sort through your emotions. You can tear out and carry with you the perforated “Care Cards” for words of encouragement during the lowest points of your day.
You’ll begin to gain closure in your loss. It’s sometimes hard to move on in life when you are still dealing with the grief and emptiness that happens after a loved one dies. You’ll learn how to go through a healthy season of grieving, then begin transitioning to emotional and spiritual wholeness. We call this “your journey from mourning to joy.”
You’ll become part of a “family.” GriefShare group members often tell us that they feel like their group has become a family, that they made new friends and are around people they can relate to.
You’ll discover hope for the future. While things may look bleak now, you’ll learn ways to restore your hope and rebuild your life. Many GriefShare alumni tell us the program helped them move from deep grief to peace and a sense of joy again.
Weekly session topics
Each week your group will watch a video seminar on DVD. The GriefShare videos cover topics essential to your recovery from the hurt of grief and loss. The videos are produced in a compelling television magazine format and feature interviews with grief recovery experts, mini-dramas, on-location video, and real-life stories of people who have experienced the death of a loved one.
Here is a snapshot of key themes found in each of the 13 GriefShare session videos.
1. Is This Normal?
- You’ll discover why your grief experience is harder than you imagined
- Why the intensity and duration of your emotions are normal and appropriate
- Despite how you feel right now, there is reason for hope
2. Challenges of Grief
- You’ll learn more eye-opening reasons why your pain is so overwhelming
- Some of the overlooked, yet common, effects grief has on your mind, body, and spirit
- How to get things done when you don’t feel like you have any energy
3. The Journey of Grief – Part One
- You’ll learn helpful goals to set on your journey of grief
- How to deal with those who try to rush you through your grief
- How long the journey of grief typically lasts
4. The Journey of Grief – Part Two
- You’ll learn why it’s important to put effort into your healing
- How the events surrounding your loved one’s death affect your grief
- The best ways to deal with your loved one’s belongings
5. Grief and Your Relationships
- You’ll find out how the death of a loved one affects your friendships
- Why solitude can be a blessing and a curse
- How to deal with friends who don’t understand your grief
- This session demonstrates that God wants you to share your feelings with Him
- Why being honest with God is an expression of faith
- What God has to say to you about your “why” questions
7. Guilt and Anger
- You’ll learn how to deal with false guilt
- How to grieve conflicted relationships
- How to handle grief-related anger
8. Complicating Factors
- You’ll begin to see how traumatic experiences affect grief
- How to deal with nightmares and flashbacks
- How your thinking affects your emotions
- You’ll discover how to prevent getting stuck in grief
- Common misconceptions that hinder healing
- Why your path to healing isn’t always smooth
10. Lessons of Grief – Part One
- You’ll become aware of an often-overlooked reason that grief is so painful
- Why going to church can be so difficult
- The benefits of helping others
11. Lessons of Grief – Part Two
- This session provides a more complete picture of who you are now that your loved one is gone
- Why no one grieves perfectly
- What grief can teach you about relationships
- Session 12 answers questions about heaven and the afterlife, such as what heaven is like
- Whether you should communicate with your deceased loved one
- Whether near-death experiences are reliable descriptions of heaven
- And many more
13. What Do I Live for Now?
- You’ll learn why moving forward is a necessity
- Why it’s a process
- Why peace and pain will always coexist