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Healthy Grief

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Elizabeth Kubler Ross an American psychiatrist born in Switzerland has been a major figure in pioneering the idea of provision of psychological counseling to people who are almost dying. She has done several studies in near death experiences and is the author of a great book ‘On Death and Dying’ which was done in 1969. The topic of death and its experience had been ignored by many professional in the past but Elizabeth Kubler Ross dedicated most of her time and her career to this specific topic. She has done intense research work and counseling specifically on dying patients and this has enabled her to come up with a conclusion that many people undergo through five distinct mental stages as death approaches. Her work has sufficiently helped other professional in provision of more appropriate services to their patients in terms of treatment and advice. Elizabeth Kubler Ross works and ideas have been brought into the public limelight through several popular texts such as books and articles. She has also been of great assistance to terminally ill patients and their caretakers through provision of instructions and also treatment in different forums that include seminars and sometimes in healing centers too.

Elizabeth Kubler Ross developed the famous grief Kubler Ross model basically known as the five stage of grief that she introduced in her 1969 book ‘On death and Dying’. It gives a comprehensible description of the process by which patients and people in general deal with tragedy and grief especially when such people are faced with a great loss or diagnosed with a terminal illness (Derek). It is given in five discrete stages. Her book ‘On Death and Dying’ is considered to have played a great role in bringing public awareness to the understanding required for better care and treatment of people suffering from diseases considered to be fatal. Elizabeth Kubler Ross gave the progression of states in the five discrete stages which commences with the first stage of denial. In this stage, a patient is in a state where he or she keeps on hanging to the idea that they are fine and nothing is happening to them. This feeling is gradually replaced by sensitive understanding of individuals and situations that will remain behind after death. The second stage is anger.

The person asks himself or herself questions like why me? The person recognizes the idea that the denial they were experiencing cannot continue. At this stage the individual proves to be difficult to be taken care of and feelings of envy and rage take over. The third stage is the bargaining stage where the patient feels the urge to live and is filled with the individuals urge to somehow delay death or postpone it. The forth stage is the depression stage. The individual feels sad and sees no reason to be bothered by anything in this world because he or she is going to die anyway. Here the individual facing death begins to understand the certainty of death. Most of the time during this stage as the persons knows they are facing death for sure; they become silent and spend a lot of time grieving and crying. The fifth and final stage is acceptance. Here the individual comes to understand that he or she can not fight death and it will happen whether they like it or not (Kübler).

Job a servant of God and a farmer is a story told in the bible and gives an account of the suffering and grief that he underwent after several great loses that were concurrent. The suffering he underwent has several similarities with the stages of suffering described by Elizabeth Kubler Ross above. However, in this case, God was testing Job’s faith that is why he put him through such great suffering. Job lost all his wealth in terms of animals and farm produce. He also lost all his children. This was considered physical suffering which did not stop there as he was exposed to bodily suffering through a fatal skin disease. Job underwent some of the stages of grief described by Elizabeth Kubler Ross in her model but did not go through all those stages. He went through stage two of grieving as described by Elizabeth Kubler Ross and the subsequent stages that followed.

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