A counselor is a professional who is entitled to guide someone who feels not sure of what to do. Counselors are of different levels and stages. They include marriage, mental, social counselors among others. Their profession is of high demand and they are available in various institutions; they include schools, companies and other all social places.
Discuss in details the role of a counselor concerning the terminally ill and the family
What is a terminal illness? This is an advanced stage of a disease with an unfavorable prognosis and no known cure. Examples of terminal illness are the end stage of cancers, some heart diseases, kidney diseases, etc.
What terminal illness people go through? People diagnosed with terminal illness are likely to through painful experiences whereby they may conflict with emotions. Denials are one thing people with a terminal illness go through, not believing what they have been diagnosed with; they are also likely to go through moments of anger. People with a terminal illness may be angry with God or others and mostly ask “why me.” They are also upset with the disease and what will be happening next in their lives.
Terminal illness can cause people to have depression because of pain and stress they go through with medication, and they are also hopeless. In most cases, people with terminal illness are emotionally down, and they tend to like to be alone and cry a lot since they are mostly looking to the end of their lives.
FAMILIES OF TERMINAL ILLNESS PERSON
When terminal illness strikes a person, the whole family is involved affected, primarily because of the disease process and health care experience. The patients have needs that the families are the ones who provide and care. The family plays a significant role in the illness because the whole family gets sick too in some way. Sickness causes economic strain in the family and also the normal functioning of the family is disrupted depending on the level of illness. Sometimes terminal illness brings the family together. They many burdens for the great need they have to see their loved one through the illness process.
ROLE OF A COUNSELOR
Terminal illness is a crisis within the family, and the family is as well as sick, and they are faced with anxiety and fear of their loved one. Some families become desperate, and many try to look for every possible solution to get the cure for their loved one and some to calm the anxiety. The family going through pain, stress, lack of hope, and yet are the ones who should be active for their loved ones need someone to encourage and walk with them. They need a counselor to prepare them and help them know what is happening because some are confused.
The family of the terminal illness person has many questions, they are asking themselves; therefore, when the diagnosis is made, the counselor communicates to the family. As the family knows the diagnosis, the patient has a right to know too to understand. The role of a counselor is to psycho-educate the patient and the family and have them go through counseling. The importance of psycho-education is to help the family and the patients prepare for treatment and death as well. The family has so many questions about why it’s happening to them, and they may feel rejected by God and friends; therefore, the counselor’s role is to give unconditional positive regard to the family. This is by showing unconditional love and come to the family, even when they are asking the question, it’s essential to walk with them and be there for them as a family.
Terminal illness is exhausting, with physical energy, economic strains, emotional investment, etc. and when all these things are happening, the family may fail to take care of themselves or the sick person. The counselor role is to offer and give empathy to the family and try to understand the situation they are going through and walk with them. It’s vital for the counselor to help the children get informed if it’s the parent who has a terminal illness or one of them. These help the children not to be so much consumed in worry about what is going on its essential to prepare them mentally.
The families’ preparation of the present happenings and what might happen in the future is important to see the reaction and know the areas to concentrate on when helping. The training helps the family become stable through counseling, to improve as a counselor, the family resolve anger and maintain a healthy attitude with one another. Its counselor’s role to be present until the process is done to give hope and guidance to the family. The counselor in the terminal is to present Jesus as the great counselor in terminal illness crisis by helping people the way Jesus helped in John 11 this is by taking action, or walking with the family and helping.