Our world is in a unique shared space. During this time of COVID, there are no differences or preferences. The diversity within us actually has merged into a realm that is equal to all humankind. During this time of isolation, this arena can be even more exacerbated for Supported Individuals. Few things to consider are the following: remote support, expansion of consent in counselling, mindfulness and appropriate psycho-education; limits and considerations.
As a Therapist I often provide services to families and Supported Individuals. This is a population that we often overlook, and do not adequately service. It is my experience that counselling is one of the resources that can be of great benefit for both the individual and the family in these situations. There needs to be a better understanding of the purpose, core values, barriers and some recommendations which may provide better insight and perhaps help networks to appreciate and recognize the value in counselling for Supported Individuals. It is important to put resources in place for individuals with developmental or emotional disabilities that support whatever choices they want to make, independently or in a supported environment.
Grieving and comprehending this with supported individuals whether they live independently or within their family is an area that is complicated and has no clear definition. In essence there is no clear “way” to grieve. Grieving a loss coupled with cognitive challenges can take this life process to another dimension, requiring a different understanding and support.
For caregivers, we may feel helpless and may revert to the following in order to protect our loved one. The following are areas to avoid when a supported individual is grieving: