Cruse services

I had a couple of Cruse sessions eight weeks after the loss of my Husband at a time when I was still in shock. This was in December. It was decided mutually to suspend these whilst I sought the advice of a Doctor regarding other forms of counselling. Today I asked Cruse if I could restart with them and my original Cruse volunteer rung me and informed me this was maybe not a good idea as I had appeared negative during these two previous sessions several months previous. I thought this was allowed as I was suffering after my loss. I told her I felt I was now experiencing a degree of complicated grief and could I try again but I have been refused the opportunity - with NHS counselling 16 weeks, it’s a long time to wait for an alternative. I hoped they would see me again but it is not to be.

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I go to Cruse counselling after losing my husband suddenly in January, I was under the impression that you could cancel and restart again if that’s what you needed to do. If you feel you would benefit from the counselling call them back, maybe a different counsellor would benefit you.
Personally I don’t feel that counselling is helping me but I’m sticking with it for now because I don’t know what else to do. I’ve just found this group and joined today hoping to find some comfort from people in similar situations.

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Hi Tina. I’m sorry you had a bad experience with Cruse. My experience with them wasnt helpful at all. The person who took my initial details was quite abrupt, didn’t have any empathy for my situation and said they were so busy it would take a few days to come back to me. Three weeks later I still hadn’t heard. I was so disgusted with her attitude I wrote to Cruse. GIve them their due, their Chairman wrote back and apologised and said my comments would be addressed and should I like to try again, please do. I don’t! I think we are feeling sensitive enough without an organisation that sets itself up to offer grief counselling, making things worse. This was just my experience and I’m sure other have found it to be different. I have decided if I want to go for counselling in the future, I will go privately but my Cruse experience has put me off them. Don’t give up though Tina. See if your GP could get you an urgent referral through the NHS.

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Kimmy and Gilli
Thankyou both so much for your comments and advice. I know some people have found Cruse helpful but I have also heard of one or two others with similar experiences to us. Kind regards to both of you.

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I am using Cruse at the moment and I never received a response when I called them and left a message. However, I turned up at their group bereavement session and it was very good. I think that problems occur as the organisation has a heavy reliance on volunteers and some are better than others.

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I found my experience with Cruse a bit of a non-event. The counselor I had, a very nice person, didn’t contribute very much. To be fair, she shared with me about her parents death and how it affected her.

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I think Cruse should describe themselves as “a listening service” rather than a counselling service. As well intentioned as the volunteers are, they are just that, volunteers. Sometimes we need a professional to guide us through a session, to prompt us with well-timed questions and to provide a two way interaction. It’s OK if there have been no complicating circumstances surrounding the loss and listening is all that is required but sometimes things are a bit beyond experience and a well meaning heart. My experience with Cruse was not positive.

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I think that’s a fair comment Tina. I still go to cruse but sometimes I think my counsellor is learning more from me than I am from her. Other than a few hands outs she isn’t offering anything other than someone to chat to, I don’t know what I’m supposed to gain from going, nothing can change our situation at the end of the day x

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Hi everyone, I would like to attend a bereavement group, how do you find a local group? I don’t think one to one counselling is for me. Best wishes x

You can contact your local branch of Cruse to find out what support groups they run: http://www.cruse.org.uk/cruse-areas-and-branches

You may also be able to find out about local support groups through your GP, hospital or a hospice.

There is also WAY (Widowed and Young, for under-50s) and Way Up (for 50+) - they don’t run formal support groups, but they have online forums similar to ours, but more geared towards helping users find others in their area and organise meet-ups.

My GP advised me to contact CRUSE which I did. The counsellor was very nice and sympathetic and agreed I needed counselling. He advised me to go privately through my work insurance, I contacted them and they said go back to CRUSE as I would only get 6 sessions and I needed more. I contacted CRUSE again and I was told they have a 12 week waiting list so here are some alternative counsellors to contact. Not helpful at all. It has taken me along time to ask for help and I’m not getting it.
It takes a lot of courage to admit you need help and the knock backs are not helping.

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