Healing the pain, transforming the fear
As a medical doctor and former humanitarian, I have a deeply rooted, I would say "essential" desire to be of help. During my research on the afterlife, I soon realised that what I was leaning could be of great help to the bereaved an the dying, and I embarked into what was, personally, a monumental job. I invested over 2,000 hours of work in producing the 23 video modules and accompanying workbook of my Love Knows No Death method. And I donated it to the Forever Family Foundation. I did not make a penny from my work, and the Foundation, as a not-for-profit organisation, uses the revenue from the sales of the modestly-priced manual for its charitable operations. I am happy that my work has been helping thousands of people around the world - that pretty much satisfies my essential desire.
Yet, over the years, quite a few people have approached me asking if I would be available to provide one-to-one counseling. Many of these were bereaved people who were seeking for grief recovery advice. Others wanted validation of paranormal experiences they had, particularity concerning after-death communication. One person had what he thought was a pathological fear of death. I have gladly provided feedback and advice, either through email or via Skype communications. Through these exchanges, I feel I was able to make a positive contribution, and I have learned a lot myself.
If you are interested in personalised, compassionate and confidential grief and bereavement recovery advice based on the Continuing Bonds approach, please read carefully the following paragraphs.
Just as every person is different, every loss is different and we cannot and should not expect grief recovery to follow a set path, the same for everybody. I can help you figure your own, personal path. I can help you understand and accept that, just like the love you feel, the pain from a major loss will never entirely disappear. However, by redefining the relationship with a loved one who is no longer physically present but has not ceased to exist, that love can be celebrated and that pain can be healed to a great extent.
Should we enter into a counseling relationship, my sole motivation will be that I wish you well. That is the - often misunderstood - true nature of compassion. Many think that compassion means feeling other people's pain. This is impossible, especially for such a uniquely personal situation like bereavement, and detrimental in a counseling setting. Instead, I will be intensely compassionate by wishing you well, by desiring that you get better, and helping you along the way.
What gets said or written in a counseling relationship stays there. Period. I will not share any information about you, your situation and circumstances, or any data. Communication will take place through dedicated, high security platforms.
It is primordially important that you understand that, although I am a medical doctor and a trained Cognitive Behaviour psychotherapist, the advice I will provide to you is not a substitute for medical attention. I will not presume to diagnose or treat mental or medical disorders. At the beginning, I will ask you to complete the self-administered Beck Depression Index questionnaire, and if your results indicate severe depression I will decline you on as client and refer you to mental health professionals.
Continuing Bonds is an evidence-base approach to grief and bereavement counseling that challenges the prevailing idea that it is necessary to sever the bonds with the deceased in order for the survivor to be free to make new attachments and to construct a new identity.
The idea of banishing the deceased from the lives of the living surfaced because of a waning interest in the afterlife in Western society. Scientific worldviews in the twentieth century led to death being viewed as clinical, autonomous from the living, or a failure of medicine, rather than seeing it as both a natural and inevitable part of life.
Research, however, shows that this "emotional detachment" simply is not what bereaved people do, and promoting it as a goal in counseling is useless at best and can actually be harmful.
Instead, the Continuing Bonds Theory proposes that people should maintain an evolving and continuing relationship with their deceased loved ones and not banish him or her from their life. This is what people actually do, in surprisingly similar forms across all cultures and societies, and this is what should be promoted and supported for grief resolution.
This approach goes hand in hand with afterlife science, whose findings suggest that human personality survives the death of the physical body and therefore provide additional foundation for the idea of a continuing and evolving relationship with the deceased.
In order to remain highly focused and to deliver the personalised and compassionate advice I am committed to, I take on a strictly limited number of clients - maximum four at any given time. Please be advised that there may be some waiting time.
As part of the counseling relationship, you may be asked to do some "homework", such as, for example, keeping a Daily Mood Record or reading short articles.
I provide advice either by exchanging email through a secure, dedicated server, by videoconferencing through Skype, or a combination of the two. I will offer an initial consultation, either by email or by video, at no charge. Following that, if you decide to go ahead, I will ask you for an initial commitment of five email exchanges (priced at $45 each) or five 30-minute videoconferencing sessions (priced at $90 each). Subsequent email exchanges, or video sessions, if any, will be charged individually.
If you want to learn more about online counseling, please refer to this article by John M. Grohol, PsyD
To enquire about availability and book an initial consultation, please use this contact form.