Goals / Objectives

This optional module contains information to allow the participants to better understand how grieving is a factor that must be addressed when dealing with TBI. If the facilitator decides to use this module the number of group sessions should be increased to 7 and this module will fit best in week 3 or 4 of the group.

Grief is most often associated with death. However, death is not the only cause of grief. Although death is an important reason, there are other losses in life that we also need to grieve. These too are life-changing and will elicit the same grief responses as death does.

Grief can also result from a disease such as Alzheimer’s or a catastrophic injury such as a brain injury. This kind of grief is profound. People must grieve who they were, and the family also grieves the person who is no longer “there”, albeit physically present. Even if the injury was not catastrophic and may have previously been unidentified, once a person is aware that they sustained a brain injury, they also become aware of the losses in typical development, identity, personality, relationships, etc. that could have resulted from that injury. Our society is only beginning to understand how profound this type of grief is.

The primary goals of this week will be for participants to:

  • Better understand grief in the context of brain injury
  • Learn how grieving is an on-going process
  • Provide strategies for addressing grief

TIME: Allow 1.5 hours for the session.

NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS: A minimum of four participants is recommended.

Activities / Content

Activities (PDF)

Content (PDF)

  • Current Understanding of Grieving and TBI (5-10 min)
  • Ice Breaker (5-10 min)

Group Activity (PDF)

  • Coping Strategies (10-15 min)

Reflection / Homework (10 min) (PDF)



These handouts can be found in the handout section for this section, the facilitator’s guide will indicate when these should be referenced.


Write the following group rules on the white board for reference for participants throughout the
treatment group:

  • Confidentiality: The information we discuss in this group is private, and members are expected to keep it that way.
  • Respect: Give your attention and consideration to participants, and they will do the same for you. Examples include:
    • No talking over each other,
    • Pay attention to the person talking (listen, don’t just wait for your turn to talk)
    • Encourage each other, etc.
  • Participation: You are expected to take part in the discussion and contribute to this group. The pace of this group, however, may limit some participation. Let’s briefly discuss one way that the group leader(s) can signal you when we need to wrap up discussion and move on.

Write the following learning objectives on the white board for reference throughout the treatment group::

  • Structure and topic
  • Homework review
  • Grieving & TBI
  • Break
  • Group Activity
  • Reflection/Homework

Note: If additional rules were agreed upon, be sure to include each additional rule during this review. For more information on grieving and brain injury, visit www.brainline.org