The process of dying is an irreversible process because it is known that there is no coming back to life for the individual who has died, there is associated generalized applicability in that all living things die and that it is inevitable that all living things must die eventually. That death is caused by cessation of bodily functions vital for life sustenance is an important understanding and that its timing is not known as it is unpredictable. It often considered therapeutic to grieve for the loss of a loved one for a given time period, to acknowledge the reality of a loss, work through the emotional distress, adjust to the absence of the deceased in ones life and to loosen ties with the deceased and develop new ones. These are variably accomplished in different individuals depending on if the death was expected or not.
Therapeutic approaches for explaining dying and bereavement
The therapeutic approaches discussed below are the Kubler- Ross’s theory of grief and Bowlby theory of attachment. Whereas they both endeavor to explore the process of dying and bereavement and are of the thinking that they occur in phases: Kubler-Ross’s theory defines five phases; denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance while Bowlby’s theory describes four phases; shock and numbness, yearning and searching, disorientation and disorganization and reorganization and resolution. They both describe the phases of dying and bereavement as non linear as they may coexist and are progressive in that one transits from one phase to the next. However, Bowlby’s theory puts it out that the outcome of the bereavement process is predictable in contrast to Kubler-Ross’s theory where the outcome is unknown. Whereas Kubler associates hope to be the driving factor in all the five phases of dying and bereavement, Bowlby isolates each phase to be independent of the other without a connecting feature.