Acknowledgement

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In 2011, writer Meghan O’Rourke and psychologist Leeat Granek wrote a series of articles about grief for Slate magazine based on a survey they conducted (see http://www.slate.com/articles/life/grieving.html). Eight thousand readers responded to questions focused on the emotional and social … [Read more...]

Clichés

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Did you ever have a paper returned in English class with a red mark through a phrase and the notation “avoid clichés?” Imagine this red line when you are talking with someone who is grieving. A cliché is a phrase that once had meaning but has been overused and now has lost its meaning. We use … [Read more...]

Catastrophic Thinking

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People who grieve sometimes respond to “normal events” with catastrophic thinking, a psychological term used to describe when a small event provokes thoughts of a dire conclusion. Your daughter is late, so you fear she has been in an accident. You feel a pain and suddenly you know it is cancer. … [Read more...]

Community

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All who suffer a loss through death do so in a community. Your community may be small or large. Your community may meet your needs for support, or it may withdraw sooner than you wish. How your community responds to you becomes part of your story of loss. You may need additional support outside … [Read more...]

Grief and the Holidays

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Those who mourn often wish they could avoid this time of year. They wish they could start a nap before Thanksgiving and wake up in January. The holidays create a collision between cultural expectations of celebration and the personal reality of sorrow. If your loved one died during the holiday … [Read more...]

Grief and Depression Part 2

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Grief and depression can intersect in ways that cause confusion for those who mourn. It can be difficult for mourners to know if they are also depressed during their time of sorrow. •    Some who grieve may have experienced depression prior to their loss or are already depressed at the time of … [Read more...]