Everyone encounters problems in everyday
life and for some people the problems can become too much to
deal with on their own.
Older people’s reactions to events and
situations are no different to that of the rest of the population
and their capacity to cope will vary from person to person.
Many older people feel awkward discussing their
problems and concerns with friends or members of their family
and so an older person may benefit from talking to a trained
and experienced Counsellor.
There are a number of issues, which many older
Many older people have been with their spouse or partner
for a considerable amount of time and it is likely that
each partner will have a strong attachment to the other.
When a spouse dies it is often difficult for the widow/widower
to adjust. Also as we get older the number of deaths of
close friends and family members increases and so older
people can often experience an overload of grief.
As well as bereavement, there are a number of other losses
that older people can experience. These include:
Loss of independence
Loss of health
Loss of mobility
Loss of family home
Many older people can experience feelings of isolation.
They can feel “cut off” from society and think
that they are completely alone.
Older people often have concerns regarding their own health
and well-being. They may also become anxious about practical
and financial issues. Many older people worry about how
they will cope on a day-to-day basis.
Many older people can experience intense feelings of loneliness.
This can happen particularly when an older person remains
living in their own home after the death of a spouse.
Fears about the future
Some older people have fears and anxieties about their future
and whether or not they can remain living independently
in their own homes.
Awareness of own mortality
Often when older people have experienced the loss of a spouse,
friends and family, they have a greater sense of their own
Gives individuals the opportunity to share past and present
problems in a confidential and supportive environment
Can assist in reducing stress
Assists older people in coming to terms with their losses
Helps people adjust to a new situation
Often gives people a greater sense of acceptance so they
can have a better quality of life
Gives people the opportunity to think afresh and explore
ways of coping more effectively
How to Find a Counsellor
There are a number of ways in which an older
person can contact a Counsellor:
Many GP surgeries provide a counselling service, although
there is often a waiting list.
Many branches of Age Concern offer a free counseling service
to older people. This service may be particularly beneficial
to those who are housebound, as often the Counsellors will
visit the older person in their own home.
British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
Members of this Association abide by a Code of Practice,
which establishes and maintains standards. The BACP is able
to send information about Counsellors in a chosen area of
If you require further assistance or would
like to speak to the Independent Care Adviser this site recommends
please call 0800 137 669 or complete the e-mail