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Friday, April 8, 2011

Loss of a Pet l Is your Pet Loss Support a Positive or Negative Experience? l Pet Loss TV l Brent Atwater


Loss of a Pet  Is your Pet Loss Support a Positive or Negative Experience? 

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Support groups for pet connections through angel animals, animal spirits, pet networks, animal afterlife and Rainbow Bridge residents come in all sizes and flavors; in person, in healthcare facilities, in church, in homeless pet shelters, animal rescue groups, other organizations and online. They are promoted to provide substantive and positive emotional and spiritual support. Does your pet loss group meet the criteria for a positive or negative experience?

A positive proactive support group is one that encourages learning. This group promotes going forward and helps facilitate expanded awareness and your empowerment. They are a blessing in your life!

The positive group leader is not intimidated by your unanswerable questions, but inspired to become more educated. This moderator encourages you to ask questions that require more research in order to challenge each group member to think beyond the present pet loss “was” circumstances and into a larger mindset of “is it possible my pet could reincarnate?”

This open minded attitude discourages group members from maintaining a “my pet is forever gone” victim mentality.

A positive animal bereavement group is aware of the psychological reasons you might be using your negative reaction for “sympathy attention.” They understand this is a confusing and complicated time in your life. However, an animal grief counselor will try to reconstruct a new awareness through uplifting approaches to addressing your life without your cherished animal companion. The moderator’s job is to facilitate your moving through this time of emotional pain and loneliness, not enable self pity.

From your introductory "pet loss story" to your weekly “how are you doing” tale of woe, the negative pet loss support group meets only to celebrate the identity you created from the devastating death of your pet. This is a "victim" group, bonding with others and commiserating in perpetual negative energy at the highest level of disguise.

No matter how much you think this group is helping you cope with the death of a pet, they are not. They exist to talk about and share negative experiences creating a "stuck" atmosphere. It's bonding by ongoing "downers." You do not receive points for being a victim of your pet loss. You are in fact, contributing to your own demise.

It should be a great concern to participate in a group that does nothing but recount what “was” and all the continual unhappiness permeating the lives of its pet loss participants. Inevitably this will negatively impact participant's minds and spirits. Your pet’s death details and painful suffering do not need to be addressed over and over, again and again.

Since you’ve already lived your pet loss “story,” why would anyone keep activating that grief and negative energy? This is a common scenario in online Internet groups. Research substantiates that recounting your horror story and reading the countless painful venting of others does not facilitate positive mental responses.

Acceptance is one thing, denial another. Being “the victim” of your pet’s death drains your energy. Experiencing pet loss and addressing it with the "pity poor me" approach is futile. It may elicit help for a while, but the key here is "for a while." Give up the pity party. Look for a new pet loss grief perspective to restore your heart and inspire hope.

As long as you are recounting what “was,” you are living in the past. I know folks who are still telling the same story about “Fluffy’s” death with every tiny detail embellished to the fullest just to keep the conversation vibrant with the drama of what was.

To this type of person, actually moving forward after their bereavement “oh no,” that pet guardian would need to have a life and do something other than talk about themselves and their loss.

This type of individual just moves from person to person, support group to support group until that cluster of listeners isn’t asking enough questions, or providing the “poor you, you have been through so much with the death of your pet” comments.

I know a woman who after years of pet loss bereavement counseling and therapy and ten years in every pet loss grief support group, animal bereavement condolence community and pet loss sympathy chat room she could find, started her own pet support group because no one wanted to hear her repetitive stories.

Do you have any of the tendencies mentioned above? Do you like the attention your sorrow facilitates? If so, then you need to determine “why” you require this form of negative attention. This inner void will erode your soul and eventually your health.

Do not use the fact that you lost your pet as an identification marker or to give your online life significance.

By creating your identity as the suffering victim of your pet’s death, YOU are the only one who will lose friends, and the respect and patience of those who encourage and support your healing.

Many animal support group members want attention. They use their pet’s absolute worst illness and death suffering occurrences as a banner to set them apart. It is imperative that these individuals muster the courage to break from their neediness of relying on their pet loss to give meaning to their life in “the” group. This is not productive. If a person keeps wallowing in this downtrodden existence, they can rest assured that less and less people and friends will ask “how you’re feeling?”

You CAN tell your pet loss story as a "learning opportunity" to help educate and heal others in your group, rather than as a commiseration Band-aid. If your group is not continually supporting your positive emotional, spiritual growth, leave.

A negative support group ultimately does more harm than good. Although grieving takes time, uplifting attitudes are essential. Living with your pet’s “death memory” can drain your energy day-to-day and breath-by-breath.

I understand since my fiancĂ© was killed in a sudden auto crash. I never had the chance to say anything or have a “heads-up.”

It's better to celebrate your fur baby’s life and remember all the good times. Then you keep pet’s positive contribution to your life alive.

By celebrating your pet’s life, you never have to bury their memories. You can take them out of your heart’s memory box at any time, like a special gift and savor all the wonderful thoughts and feelings.

So analyze your pet loss support group’s dynamics to determine if you are growing or JUST rehashing to the max, the pet loss that you already experienced.

Ask yourself:

1. Does your group embrace having an open mind and greater consciousness and awareness?

2. Are you taking knowledge gained from your group as a positive educational experience?

Unless you choose to grow forward, you will remain in the same condition that brought you into the group in
the first place.

3. Have you’ve stayed too long in the grief stage?

4. Do feel any better today than yesterday?

Last but not least!

Have you ever considered that your pet does NOT have to live forever as an Angel Animal, or resident of the Rainbows Bridge in animal spirit or afterlife?

Have you ever researched or considered Animal life after death?

Brent Atwater
the Animal Medium
Animal Communication that Heals your Heart!
www.brentatwater.com
Brent@BrentAtwater.com