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A Father’s Death: Struggling with the “what ifs?”

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | June 19, 2017 | 0 Comments

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My father had schizophrenia and I am so proud of how he managed his illness. He will continue to be an inspiration to me and I do direct my son, who struggles with mental illness, to grandpa’s example. My father found that walking cleared his thoughts and decreased the symptoms of depression. …

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A Husband’s Grieving x

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | June 12, 2017 | 0 Comments

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, The wife of a close friend of nearly 50 years passed away from ALS. We spoke each week at least once and I visited her when I could. I actually emailed her more towards the end since she longer could speak. The bottom line was that she asked me a few months …

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My teenage son was electrocuted…

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | June 5, 2017 | 1 Comment

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My teenage son was electrocuted at home accidentally almost 20 years ago.  My counselor is not happy with my saying he was killed.  I know the difference because about three decades ago, another toddler son  died from a cerebral aneurysm , so in my eyes one died and one was killed and to me …

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An Oncology Unit Nurse Asks…

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | May 30, 2017 | 1 Comment

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, I work on an oncology unit in a large metropolitan hospital as a senior nurse, supervising several RNs and nursing assistants who care for many seriously ill patients.  Although most of the care we provide supports their recovery, we also lose many patients each week, some of whom are offered palliative care …

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Hospice Bereavement Coordinator asks about reaching out…

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | May 22, 2017 | 1 Comment

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My question is related to the bulk of my role as a hospice bereavement coordinator, which is to reach out via telephone to identified bereaved family members of our hospice patients after the patient has passed.  The bereavement model employed is a “clean break” model, meaning the team that cared for the family prior …

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My Daughter Took Her Own Life x

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | May 15, 2017 | 1 Comment

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My only child, my 16 year old daughter, took her own life just one month ago.  She showed no signs at all.  Straight A student, worked as cashier part time, saving money for college.  She just finished her College Boards and got an amazing score.  I know this wasn’t planned–she had placed orders …

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Therapist question about a mother who lost a son and is now experiencing complicated grief.

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | May 8, 2017 | 0 Comments

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, I’m a family therapist who has been working with a couple who have lost a young adult son in a drowning accident in a distant country, and in which the mother has remained in a deep, unshakeable grief for over three years, for two of which I have been working with her and her …

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I’ve lost all my parents and siblings

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | May 1, 2017 | 2 Comments

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, I’ve lost all my parents and siblings.  Each one I’ve grieved and tried to move on, but now that I’ve lost my last remaining family member, my sister, five weeks ago, why do I feel like I’m grieving for them all now? I’ve never felt so lost and alone now that I’ve lost …

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Anticipatory Grieving: mourning the living

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | April 24, 2017 | 1 Comment

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, Your recent reply to the woman widowed over 25 years ago resonated with me, even though my husband is still alive.  I am a member of the Well Spouse Association, a national nonprofit organization which provides peer support to those caring for chronically ill or disabled spouses. “Chronic sorrow”…”bleaching out of emotions”…”surviving but not thriving”… “sense of not fitting …

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I lost my young wife x

By Dr. Robert Neimeyer | April 17, 2017 | 0 Comments

I lost my young wife after twenty years of marriage. Since then I feel like I’ve moved on; I found a new wife whom I love completely. We’ve raised terrific children. My problem is that I have an irrational fear of loss. At least once a day I obsess about losing my new wife, our …

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