I was very low, in shock still, and not functioning very well – was in denial and unable to believe what had happened/ was happening.
My sister saw an article in a magazine or newspaper and sent it to me.
I was already having counselling and had been since my partner left, and because the sessions took so long to arrange I had moved on a bit. I also felt (especially at the beginning and hearing others’ stories), outside of the group, as I do not have children, so their collective feelings and experience did not relate to mine. I also had to miss a number of sessions due to work so felt slightly out of things on my return. My individual experience in terms of life experience and work was very different and I was working and earning – so that was a comfort and focus the others did not have. Hearing how others were feeling, mirroring my own actions, state of mind, even to the extent of how I was acting (at times), was helpful and in a strange way reassuring. That I was not going mad, that it was all part of the process of grief and grieving. It was also interesting to see how we all coped and in different ways. That we (individually and collectively) could be of support, and support one another in sessions.
The most productive and helpful part at the end was sharing addresses and contact details – we remain in regular contact (except for one person) and meet each other as friends and a support network of people, with similar experiences. Also, seeing the most vunerable grow, and become more independent with our support, was good as well as comforting that I would be able to do the same. Felt sad that the formal sessions had ended but more able to consider the future.