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The Five F’s

tools to help you understand group members


  • name, loss, occupation, interests, time since loss, emotional impact of loss


  • family of origin, spouse & children, extended family, complex family dynamics


  • faith background, spiritual vs religious, spiritual pain, level of support from faith


  • anger, anxiety or worry, permanence of grief, will anything be the same, heaven


  • vision of next steps, life beyond loss, capacity to see a future, stuck or moving ahead

Bridge Questions 

tools to help the group “go deeper”


  • What is on your mind today?
  • What are your expectations of this group today? 
  • How can we be helpful to you today?


  • What is it that helps you get through your loss? 
  • Where do you find support to make it through each day? 
  • Tell me more about that…

Existential Pain

  • What are your greatest concerns?
  • What if anything, are you afraid of?
  • Describe the changes you see happening to you
  • How do you feel about those changes?
  • Are you angry at anyone specifically?
  • Are you experiencing any guilt feelings?
  • What in your life do you control?

Spiritual Connection

  • Take me back to a time when you felt a strong spiritual connection – describe that experience for me
  • If that experience you just described was a “10” where are you right now? 
  • How can we move toward the “10”?