Pediatric Palliative Care
Grief and Bereavement Support for You and Your Family
After the death of a child, you may feel lost and not know where to turn for help while you grieve. At Orlando Health, the Pediatric Palliative Care team is here to continue caring for your family. Our pediatric palliative care bereavement specialist is available to provide bereavement resources and grief support to parents, siblings and extended family members of palliative care patients who have come to the end of their life.
While grief can look very different for everyone, it can help to talk with someone specifically trained in grief and bereavement support to share some common characteristics in grieving. These conversations can guide you in learning what emotional, physical and mental responses are natural and expected. Our support is available to you for as long as you need us.
How You Might Be Feeling
There is no right or wrong way to mourn. You might experience emotional responses, thoughts, physical sensations or other behaviors that are all signs of natural grief. Be kind to yourself while you are grieving. Try to remember that the way you’re feeling or acting may be overwhelming. But they may be the result of grief, even if your response does not seem to be linked to the loss you have suffered.
How We Can Help
The grief journey is very personal. Grief is as unique as your finger print. The Pediatric Palliative Care team is here to offer another layer of support. We provide grief resources, including:
- Grief counseling sessions. With flexible scheduling to accommodate your needs, these in-person or telecounseling sessions allow you to speak openly one-on-one with a grief counselor to help you guide you through your grief responses. Counseling sessions are available for individuals, couples, grandparents, other extended family members and siblings who are 12 or older. Please call or email for more information or to schedule a grief counseling session.
- Books, handouts and websites. We offer grief resources, such as books, handouts and websites that can help you through your grief journey.
- Memorial services. We invite family members, friends, and medical staff and support personnel to attend yearly remembrance ceremonies that recognize those children who have come to their end-of-life over the last several years.
- Events, webinars and more. These in-person and virtual experiences offer an opportunity to participate alongside other bereaved families through grief support events. These events are hosted by a group of Orlando Health bereaved parent volunteers called VolunPEERS, who are several years into their grief journey. The Pediatric Palliative Care VolunPEERS’ mission is to Partner, Empathize, Educate, Relate & Support other grieving family members.
No matter where you and your family are in your grief journey, we can help support you.
Take Care of Yourself
It is important to take care of yourself when you are grieving. And as you move through your grief, know that you deserve to heal in the ways you choose. Please consider these suggestions:
- Choose to spend time with people you find helpful. It’s fine to distance yourself from well-meaning people who aren’t.
- Allow yourself to feel all your emotions without judgment.
- Talk about your grief as much or as little as you want.
- Take good care of your body by eating healthy food and getting enough rest.
- Accept that you may have new limits on what you can tolerate physically or emotionally and don’t allow anyone to guilt you into doing things you are not ready to do.
If you are in crisis and feel you may do harm to yourself or someone else, please tell someone who can help right away. Call 911 for emergency services or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
Get Support and More Information
For more information about our grief and bereavement support, please call (321) 841-9692.