Grief Support

Grief Support

Losing someone you love or care deeply about is very painful. You may experience a variety of difficult emotions, and it’s sometimes hard to imagine that the anger and sadness you feel will ever fade. It’s important to remember that grief is a natural and normal reaction to a significant loss, and that you’re not alone.

Reach out to your support network through family and friends, and don’t be afraid to lean on the people who care about you. While there is no right or wrong way to grieve, there are healthy ways to cope with the pain that, in time, can allow you to heal and resume your regular routines.

A few things to remember as you begin to recover from a loss:

  • Each of us experiences grief differently, depending on our coping style and life experiences.
  • The healing process happens gradually, and can’t be rushed or ignored.
  • It’s okay to cry…but it’s also okay if you find that you can’t. Crying is a normal response to sadness, but it’s not the only one.
  • There’s no set time frame for grieving, and different individuals may take different amounts of time to heal.
  • Allow yourself to face your feelings and express them. Try talking to a trusted friend or spiritual leader, joining a support group, or writing about your loss in a journal.
  • The mind and body are deeply connect. Though it may be hard at first, remember to take care of yourself physically so that you can allow yourself to begin to recover emotionally.
  • It’s always okay to seek professional help when you need to.



The following are some tools available to assist you in your healing journey. Contact us to discuss other resources and find a personalized solution to support you on the road to recovery.

Support After a Loss

Circle of Friends+ provides you with resources on grief support and settling affairs, sent to you via text and email.

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Grief & Healing Websites



GriefShare is a friendly, caring group of people who will walk alongside you through one of life’s most difficult experiences.

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Web Healing

Web Healing offers grief discussion boards where you can talk with others who are grieving or browse recommended books on grief.

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With AARP you’ll find articles, discussions, and helpful information on dealing with end-of-life care, the challenges faced by caregivers, and how to deal with grief after a loss.

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Illinois Valley Community Hospital

At Illinois Valley Hospice, bereavement care is an integral part of our plan of care for families both before and after the passing of a loved one. The bereavement program at Illinois Valley Hospice is available to help individuals through their healing process.

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OSF Healthcare Grief Counseling & Support

The OSF Hospice pastoral care and bereavement services offer patients and their families companionship and true understanding of their experience. Individual grief counseling and/or support groups can nurture courage and strength.

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St. Margaret’s Hospital Support Group

St. Margaret’s support groups offer that listening ear. Share your story, meet with people in similar situations, or learn how to cope.

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One-on-One Counseling and Other Grief Support Options

Contact your local hospital or hospice agency for recommendations:


Compassus Hospice
(815) 220-1390

Illinois Valley Community Hospital (IVCH)
(815) 223-3300

IVCH Counseling Clinic
(815) 780-3696

Illinois Valley Hospice
(815) 224-1307

OSF St. Elizabeth Medical Center
(815) 433-3100

OSF Hospice
(815) 433-6090

St. Margaret’s Hospital (SMH)
(815) 664-5311

St. Margaret’s Hospice
(815) 664-1132

VITAS Hospice
(815) 220-0021



Area Support Groups


Grief Support Group at IVCH
Phone: (815) 780-3426
Contact: Chaplain Ray Fischer
Meets 2nd & 4th Wednesday of every month 6:30 PM
at IVCH in Conference Room C

Adult Grief Support Group at SMH
Phone: (815) 664-1402
Meets 3rd Wednesday of every month
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM or 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
at SMH

Compassionate Friends
Phone: (815) 223-7663
Contact: Rita Studzinski
For those who have lost a child of any age.
Open to parents, grandparents and siblings.
Meets 4th Thursday of every month, 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
at IVCH, 1305 Sixth Street, Peru

Children's Grief Support Group at SMH
Phone: (815) 664-1402
Children’s peer support group
for those who’ve experienced death, divorce and loss.
Meets 3rd Wednesday of every month
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM, at SMH



Children & Grief

When a loved one dies, it can be difficult to know how to help kids cope with the loss, particularly as you work through your own grief. By being open and honest, encouraging communication, and sharing your own feelings, you and your children can cope with painful times and begin your healing journey together.

The following links provide more detailed information on topics related to helping children and teens cope with loss.

When Families Grieve™

This guide was created by Sesame Workshop, the educational organization behind Sesame Street. It explores children's understanding of death and offers information about communicating, ideas for coping together, and ways to move forward with your children after a loss.

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Helpful Children's Books

This list from Allina Health recommends children’s books that deal with death and grief. There are suggestions for children of all ages, from preschool to age 12. They also have books for different types of losses, such as the loss of a parent, sibling, grandparent, friend, or pet. With these books, you can start a meaningful conversation with your child and help them understand their feelings

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More Advice

Here you'll find a Huffington Post article by Judith Acosta containing advice and guidance from her book Verbal First Aid, which counsels parents on ways to help kids heal from fear and pain in a variety of situations, including the death of a loved one. If you find the advice in the article helpful, you may want to read her book for even more insight.

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Mueller Funeral Home - Peru
Phone: (815) 223-0184
909 Pike Street, Peru, IL 61354

Mueller-Pagani Funeral Home - LaSalle
Phone: (815) 223-0096
609 Eighth Street, LaSalle, IL 61301

Mueller Funeral Home - Ottawa
Phone: (815) 434-4433
800 First Avenue, Ottawa, IL 61350

Prey-Mueller Funeral Home - Oglesby
Phone: (815) 883-8662
231 West Walnut Street, Oglesby, IL 61348

Mueller Funeral Home - Lostant
Phone: (815) 223-0184
406 West Third Street, Lostant, IL 61334

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