Question from a Hospice Social Worker…Dear Dr. Neimeyer:

I am a  hospice social worker with a large bereavement center that offers community support services for grieving people of all kinds, not only surviving family members after a loved one dies in our home care or residential facility.  But recently we’ve been stretched thin in our outreach and response services, and are trying to

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Punished by God? : Dear Dr. Neimeyer:

In my practice I have encountered some clients who have experienced a significant loss in the past (e.g., loss of a parent when they were teenagers), which obviously altered their world views. They made sense of their losses by coming to the conclusion that bad things can happen randomly in this world, while at the

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A Widow’s Complicated Grief Rituals…Dear Dr. Neimeyer:

     I am a therapist who is seeing a woman who lives alone and without children, for complicated grief, and one of the people for whom she is grieving is her husband.  They were married 4 years before he died 19 years ago,  Every year on their anniversary, she has a very complicated ritual

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Preparing for the anniversary of a daughter’s passing

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, How do I handle the one year anniversary of my daughter’s passing, which is coming up next month? She left 3 babies behind, and I found her in her room with the boys with her. Luckily they were sleeping. But I can’t get that vision out of my head! I cry, I

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A Son’s Suicide and the Holiday Season

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My 18 year old son hung himself in a tree on June 24, 2016. Since that day my life is full of guilt and heartache. I’ve seen multiple counselors and many of them have been great and they all tell me the same thing:  it’s not my fault. But, I cannot forgive

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Five Principles for Managing Grief in the New Year

Dear Dr. Neimeyer– My husband died just over a year ago, so on January 1st I will start my second year without him, and I am not looking forward to it.  It’s not that I am immobilized by grief, as I have gotten better across the months in that department, and actually feel pretty good

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My husband passed away…

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My husband passed away in five years ago. It was right before our oldest son graduated from high school and our youngest son was eight. My oldest son graduated  with a degree in electrical engineering last year. My oldest son, I believe bottled up everything; he won’t even talk to me or his

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Ambiguous Losses: a brother’s cancer diagnosis

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, Five years ago my younger brother, Eric, was diagnosed with cancer, though he was only 15 at the time.  Our life as a family seemed to change overnight, as we all were faced with the fear of what this might mean, and my parents became totally absorbed in his chemotherapy, hospitalizations, and

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Grieving and the Holidays

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My husband Don died 9 months ago after a rapid decline; and his lungs basically stopped working, even with oxygen treatments.  His death has been hard for us as a family in many ways, as he lived only about 6 months after getting the diagnosis, and we are now facing the first Christmas

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