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Hospice Bereavement and Grief Support

Franciscan Hospice and Palliative Care Bereavement Services provides our bereaved hospice families a variety of services including virtual support groups, classes and individual counseling over a 13-month period. These services are provided free of charge. 

Grief in the first year can be like an unwelcome guest that shows up on your doorstep and moves in without an invitation. We can feel like a stranger in our own body and life. Our mind works overtime trying to get us to a place of normalcy, yet it is our heart and body that need to be in the lead, with the mind following to allow painful emotions, memories to be experienced and expressed. In the beginning it can be difficult to find the words that can describe the disorientation and un-grounding of grief.  The following are common characteristics of grief.

Do any of them look or feel familiar?

  • Forgetfulness and confusion
  • Loss doesn’t seem real
  • Crying at unexpected times
  • Loss of desire/pleasure in activities
  • Mood changes due to slightest things
  • Change in appetite or weight
  • Lack of motivation or concentration
  • Guilt, rejection, sadness, loneliness
  • Upsetting image keeps coming to mind
  • Tired all the time
  • Can’t honestly tell others how I feel
  • Want to withdraw socially
  • Feel that life has lost its meaning
  • Suicidal thoughts

If you identified with any of these common characteristics of grief, you may benefit from our support groups or other bereavement services.

Participating in a grief group provides the opportunity to be in community with other newly bereaved, to share your encounters with grief, learn different ways to express it and trust as you grow and work through your feelings of loss and expanded definition of a new normal.

Our support groups welcome all adults who are grieving the death of a loved one in the past 13 months. Participants will have the opportunity to share their experiences with others, receive support and develop strategies for getting through difficult times. Often, the greatest benefit for those who join a support group is realizing that they are not alone in their experience.

All groups are facilitated by hospice bereavement counselors who help guide conversation and provide bereavement resources. We offer a variety of grief groups: six-week and on-going twice a month groups that are offered at different times and days of the week.

Preregistration with the counselor facilitating the group is required.

Specialized services for grief and bereavement

Our skilled professionals have training and experience in helping people who are coping with the death of someone close to them. Our support services help you identify your needs and strengths in dealing with loss and adjustment after a death.

Our services include:

Information and support for grief in support groups for grief and loss at locations throughout the Puget Sound area (Currently all are Virtual)

Expert team for bereavement counseling

The grief and bereavement experts at Virginia Mason Franciscan Health include:

  • Bereavement counselors
  • Chaplains
  • Social workers

Providing support and education, our specialists stand by families to help them understand their grief journey. For up to 13 months, you can access this support, including companionship, classes, events and other services.

Web resources for loss and grief

Each person goes through a unique grieving process, which unveils itself over time, differently for everyone. Below are some external resources to help in times of need.

Contact us for grief and bereavement support

Learn more about our grief services, and get help from one of our bereavement counselors by calling 1-800-338-8305.