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Abode Hospice Grief Support Group

What is grief?

Grief is a reaction to loss.

The way we experience grief is very individual; we each grieve in our own way. There are no universal “stages” to grief – it is as individual as a fingerprint or a snowflake. People may have different “styles” of grieving. Some people may express their grief verbally, or cry easily; other people may channel their grief into activity. All of these responses are normal. How we grieve is not a measure of how we love.

There is no timetable to grief. Over time, the pain lessens, and we return to similar, sometimes better, levels of functioning.

How can a support group help?

Many grieving people wonder if they would benefit from joining a support group. Support groups are a time-tested method of help for people struggling with all sorts of difficulties. But groups are not magic; there are no words that can be uttered within a group setting that can make grief disappear. Many people report comfort in the companionship of group support and benefit from knowing they are not alone in their experience of grief.

What Support Groups Have to Offer

Groups are places to work together and support in an environment where everyone gives and takes. Not every griever will find a support group suitable, as everyone grieves in their own way. For many, however, support groups have much to offer, such as:


Grief is experienced in so many ways – physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Being with other grievers can reaffirm that one is not going crazy, which is common concern of people who are grieving. While every loss in unique, having the support of other who have experienced loss and understand can be comforting.

Time Away

For many people, a support group can be a break from the loneliness and isolation that often comes with grief.

Suggestions for Coping

There is no single solution to dealing with loss; but to listen to stories of how others cope with a particular problem, new ideas for coping can emerge.


They provide hope by providing models that reaffirm that one can survive loss.


They provide new understandings and reminders of past coping skills. Sometimes grievers find that providing comfort to fellow support group members brings them a sense of pride by showing empathy and kindness to others who are grieving.

Abode Hospice offers on-going grief support for individuals who are dealing with the loss of a loved one. We offer a way to connect those who are going through common challenges. The Bereavement Support Group is free to anyone who is dealing with grief in their life.

Join Us

The Bereavement Support Group, led by Loren Couch, meets in the Conference Room in the Abode Hospice office.

744 Horizon Ct, Suite 110

Grand Junction, CO 81506

Meetings are held every Tuesday, from 2:00-3:00 pm.

For more information about the group, contact Loren Couch at 970-658-8705.

Bereavement Coordinators

Loren Couch

Loren Couch, MA ACA

Loren is a native of Nebraska and a Veteran of the U.S. Navy. Loren took his undergraduate degree from Mesa State College. He completed Graduate School at Adams State College in Alamosa, CO with a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology.

Loren has extensive experience in both group and individual therapies. He endorses the value of empathy and support that groups offer people dealing with the loss of a loved one.

Madelina Brown

Madelina Brown M. MSC

Maddie is a native of Colorado and loves her state. She is a graduate of the University of Sedona. She has pastored and been in ministry for 30+ years. She has a master’s degree in Metaphysical and Spiritual Counseling and is continuing to get her Doctorate. She has practiced for more than 20 years and supports the values of Hospice.

Developed from Journeys with Grief; A Collection of Articles about Love, Life and Loss, edited by Kenneth J. Doka, Ph. D., MDiv., Copyright Hospice Foundation of America, 2012.

Five Stages of Grief

Losing someone we love leaves us with feelings of unbearable pain, and while everyone grieves differently, there are five stages of grief that most people go through after experiencing a loss. Very Well Mind describes the five stages as follows.


The first stage of the grief process is denial. In this stage, we are trying to process the reality of the loss of our loved one. When we hear the phrase ‘denial,’ we assume it means we are attempting to pretend the loss does not exist. While this is denial, it is only a part of this stage. Experiencing denial also means we are trying to absorb and understand what is happening. When we lose a loved one, there is a lot of information to process at once. Denial attempts to slow down this process and take us through one step at a time to avoid the risk of feeling overwhelmed by our emotions. It takes time for our minds to adjust to the new reality of life without this person, and denial helps us to minimize the overwhelming pain of the loss.


Next, we move into the anger phase. Anger is very common to experience and tends to be the first thing we feel when we start to release our emotions related to loss. There is so much for our mind to process, and anger can serve as an emotional outlet. We become overwhelmed with feelings of sadness and vulnerability, and sometimes anger feels like the only way to express these feelings. We may also fear judgment or rejection if we admit that we feel vulnerable or scared so anger may feel like a safer way to express our emotions.


When we experience a loss, it is not unusual to feel so desperate that we are willing to do whatever it takes to alleviate the pain. This often comes in the form of bargaining, typically with a higher power. We often feel helpless, and bargaining can give us a perceived sense of control over something that feels so out of control. There are a variety of promises that people may make when bargaining. These can include things like, “God, I promise to turn my life around if you let this person live.” It is also common in this stage to recall times we said things we did not mean and wish we could go back and do things differently. We may also make drastic assumptions that if we had done things differently, we would not be in such an emotionally painful place in our life.


As the emotional fog begins to clear and panic begins to subside, we slowly start to really look at our new reality. At this point, bargaining no longer feels like an option, and we are forced to face what is happening. In this stage, the loss feels more present and unavoidable, and we feel it more abundantly. This can be extremely isolating, as we tend to pull inward as our sadness grows.

No one should ever have to face depression alone. If you or a loved one is struggling with depression, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA) Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.


When we reach the stage of acceptance, it is not that we no longer feel the pain of the loss. It means we are no longer resisting the reality of our situation. Feelings of sadness and regret can still be present once we have reached acceptance. However, the emotional survival tactics of denial, bargaining, and anger are less likely to be present.

We All Grieve Differently

Not everyone will experience each of these stages, while others may linger in one stage longer than others. It is important to remember that we all grieve differently. Your grief is unique to you, just like your relationship with the person you lost is unique. It is perfectly acceptable to feel whatever you are feeling.

If you or a loved one would like grief support, please contact us to learn more about our bereavement services. You do not have to face this alone. We are here for you.

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