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Online grief counseling: Types and how they can help

After suffering a severe loss, grief is a term for the deep distress a person may feel. Grief counseling is a form of psychotherapy that can help them after this loss to regain their day-to-day functioning. Some individuals may prefer online grief therapy instead of face-to – face therapy.

It is perfectly normal to experience a strong emotional reaction to losing someone or something significant. An individual can experience a broad spectrum of feelings, including:

  • shock or numbness
  • anger
  • guilt
  • sadness
  • tiredness

If intense feelings of grief affect the day-to-day life of an individual, therapy, such as online grief counseling, can help them.

This article will address various forms of therapy for online grief, how they can help, and when to seek help.

What is online grief counseling?

online grief counseling

Online grief therapy is a type of grief therapy that is accessible through the internet. Some research suggests that telemental healthcare is comparable with in-person services. It can also have the additional advantages of being more available and cheaper.

“According to the American Psychological Association ( APA), the” provision of guidance, information, and psychological support “is grief counseling to help individuals recover the ability to function after a loss.

This will typically provide therapy during the process of grieving. In 1969, the five stages of grief that many people know today were introduced by Dr. Elisabeth K├╝bler-Ross.

Fortunately, there is no correct way to experience grief. Instead, experts can refer to these stages as domains of grief, since they recognize that individuals may switch back and forth between the domains or may not even experience all the “stages” of grief at all.

How can it help?

A health professional will usually prescribe grief therapy to individuals who find it hard to cope or have difficulty grieving after a loss.

A person may benefit from counseling if grief is:

  • interfering with their daily activities
  • causing relationship problems
  • making it hard to go on with their own lives
  • causing intense feelings of guilt or depression

Grief counseling attempts to offer techniques and methods for a person to help them cope with their loss and sense of grief. This may include a person with a therapist or support group sharing their feelings and emotions to help them find ways to handle the grief process.

Undergoing grief counseling can also help individuals prevent possible side effects of grief, such as eating disorders, self-destructive habits, or sleeping difficulties.

Why seek grief counseling online?

Due to its affordability, potential for anonymity, and accessibility, online grief counseling can be particularly important.

Internet-based interventions can also deliver more versatility and quicker achievability compared to face-to – face therapy.

Types of online grief counseling

There are several different forms of online counseling for grief, and depending on their individual needs, a person can choose one or more.

The following parts will look in more depth at the forms available.

Video call sessions

One option is counseling through video or phone calls. These options allow individuals to access resources that they would not be able to access otherwise, such as due to distance or time commitments.

The APA argues that in different contexts, telemental wellbeing is similar to face-to – face care and an appropriate alternative to it.

Online chat or therapy apps

Apps for counseling, such as Talkspace and Betterhelp, allow individuals to communicate online or by text with a therapist.

BetterHelp ‘s counseling costs range from $60 to $80 per week, while Talkspace counseling starts at $65 per week.

Studies have also suggested that in-person therapy may be as effective as asynchronous messaging therapy. Therefore, for those who do not want to be vocal about their feelings, apps like these may be a convenient choice.

Support groups

Like support groups that meet in person, support groups can also be accessed online by individuals. This can be with individuals in the local region or with individuals worldwide, as it is online.

With group therapy, being around people going through similar experiences may be beneficial for an individual. This will encourage them that they are not alone, support them through their grief, and help them understand that at their own pace, individuals work through grief.


A broad range of online grief support groups are also available. Many of these forums are available 24/7., for example, is a grief support community that supports a quarter of a million individuals from over 100 countries annually.

How to choose

First of all, a person should consider how accessing support will be most comfortable, whether through live chats, social media groups, apps, or videos. They may, instead, wish to see a therapist in person.

They should also ensure that every grief support service that they receive is from a specialist and that a professional body has accreditation.

Grief counseling can also be provided by clergy members , social workers, nurses, or marriage and family counselors who have received advanced training in helping people with grief.

Costs and insurance

There are distinct costs for various forms of online grief counseling. Some may be free to use, such as forums, and others may run on donations. Others are typically cheaper than traditional types of counseling, such as video calls, and can also be more cost-effective.

Some insurance plans may cover online therapy or therapy through apps, but an individual should check this with their insurance provider. Access to grief counseling can also include certain Employee Assistance Programs.

Other choices can include therapists on a sliding scale, training clinics, or trainees.

Why it may not work

While certain individuals may be better at online grief counseling, this may not be the case for all. Traditional face-to – face treatment may be preferred by others.

If they do not meet face-to – face, some people will find it hard to form a relationship with their therapist. This can also make it hard for the therapist to interpret any nonverbal signals that they can pick up in person.

When in front of a screen, some individuals can also feel more self-conscious.

When to seek help

If they are struggling to cope with loss and are having prolonged, severe, or troublesome reactions, a person should try to get support. If they just feel like they need someone to talk to, it is also OK for a person to pursue online grief counseling.

Although a support network may be provided by family and friends, often talking to them does not feel like an option, as they may still be going through the same grieving process.

Therefore, to work through their emotions, a person may prefer to talk to a professional.


In multiple ways , people experience grief. There is no correct way for a person to experience grief. An individual who is grieving may want friends or family, support groups, or a licensed counselor to seek assistance.

Teletherapy is considered by many experts to be as effective as conventional face-to – face treatment. Due to its lower cost, greater usability and broader availability, online grief therapy can be especially beneficial.

Obianuju Chukwu

She has a degree in pharmacy and has worked in the field as a pharmacist in a hospital. Teaching, blogging, and producing scientific articles are some of her interests. She enjoys writing on various topics relating to health and medicine, including health and beauty-related natural treatments, the nutritional worth of various foods, and mental wellness.