Grief counseling sessions can help survivors cope

Published: Friday, January 4, 2013 at 07:37 PM.

CRESTVIEW — Starting 2013 may be difficult for those who’ve lost loved ones over the holidays, but coping methods may aid the healing process.

"A lot of these people can't even think about celebrating this time of year," Karen McGavin, a social worker with Covenant Hospice in Crestview, said. "The key is to build on peace and acceptance.”

Attending free grief support meetings, like Covenant’s, may help, she said. The schedule is still being worked out.

Dolores Russell, 75 — who began attending meetings after Elbert, her husband of 40-plus years, died in 2006 — said she understands how the winter season can compound grief.

"This time of year is hectic enough, just dealing with shopping and holidays," Russell said.

Covenant’s program — which allows a group of attendees to share grieving experiences — meets once a week for six weeks.

Russell suggested attending meetings when the cycle starts.

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