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Dealing with Grief/Loss


Dealing with Grief/Loss Grief and Loss Grief the feeling that occurs when one loses someone or something Loss not necessarily a person Parent or other family ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Dealing with Grief/Loss

Dealing with Grief/Loss
Grief and Loss
  • Grief the feeling that occurs when one loses
    someone or something
  • Loss not necessarily a person
  • Parent or other family member
  • Friend
  • Pet
  • Terminal Illness
  • Status (social status, SES status)
  • Material things

Stages of Grief
  • Denial, numbness, and shock
  • This did not happen. She is not dead, just went
  • Bargaining
  • I promise Ill be good if she will come back.
  • Depression
  • I really miss her I feel alone now.
  • Anger
  • Why did this have to happen? I hate her! She
    left me!
  • Acceptance
  • Grandma is gone but it is ok.

How Children Deal with Grief
  • 4-6 year olds
  • Grieve through play and imagination
  • May believe that death is temporary
  • 6-9 year olds
  • Being to understand that death is irreversible
  • 9-11 year olds
  • Have more mature concept of death
  • May want to know why and how it happened

Factors that Influence Grief
  • Suddenness of death
  • Preventability of death
  • Expression of good-bye
  • Relationship to deceased
  • Reactions of others around client
  • Developmental level of client
  • Previous experiences with death
  • Availability of support

Some Signs and Symptoms
  • Sadness
  • Anger
  • Withdraw
  • Confusion
  • Guilt
  • Regression
  • Fear of being alone or dying
  • Physical complaints
  • Changes in sleeping and eating patterns


  • Children experience loss and grief in ways most
    adults forget or can not understand. Remember to
    a child it is all about the little things in life
    that can mean so much. It can be as BIG or as
    SIMPLE as
  • Broken toy Abuse
  • Homelessness Natural disasters
  • Broken leg Violence
  • Broken home Illness
  • Broken heart Death Unemployment
  • Divorce Drugs Aids

  • Loss can include
  • Relationships death of parents, grandparents,
    friends, animals, classmate, absence of a
    teacher, sibling or friend, unavailability of a
    parent due to imprisonment, divorce, or
  • Things objects (teddy bear, toys, etc.)
  • Skills and ability things a child feels
    confident about, not picked for a sports team,
    overweight, injured, illness, held back in
    school, dyslexia.
  • The environment moving, changing schools,
    flood, hurricane, blizzard, space shuttle, 9/11
  • Habits sucking thumb, biting finger nails,
    twirling hair, beginning/ending school, change in
  • Self loss of a body part (finger, hand, leg,
    arm, eyes (glasses), loss of self-esteem
    (physical, sexual, emotional, or abuse)

  • Youll get over it.
  • Crying wont help.
  • Be strong for your mom.
  • Its time to move on.
  • Youre too young to understand.

Children work through grief
  • Understanding use age appropriate terms to help
    a child cope with where someone/thing may have
  • Grieving is also combined with anger and at
    times hard for adults to understand in a child
  • Commemorating help children remember good
    thoughts and memories about the
    person/thing/animal lost or gone
  • Going on keep children involved in activities
    (do not allow them to hide), and allow the
    thoughts and talk about the person who is gone
  • (talking about memories is an important
    part of healing)

Techniques for helping children grieve
  • Identify feelings
  • Story-telling
  • Puppets
  • Art, music, clay, sand table,
  • Role playing, drama
  • Journals
  • Memory books

Other Resources
  • Camp Courage
  • Little Brave Hearts
  • Also need resources for parents
  • Grieving as well
  • Dont know what to do about their childrens grief
  • Help Me Say Goodbye
  • By Janis Silverman

  • Beckmann, Roberta. (1990). Children who grieve.
    Florida Learning Publications, Inc.
  • Charkow, W. (1998). Inviting children to grieve.
    Professional School Counseling, 2(2), 117-122.
  • Eastman, K. Samenfeld-Spect, E. (2006). The
    Remembering our children Grief process at
    different ages. Retrieved May 21, 2009, from
    Partnership for Parents Web site
  • Eppler, C. (2008). Exploring themes of resiliency
    in children after the death of a parent.
    Professional School Counseling, 11(3), 189-196.
  • Goldman, Linda (1994). Life Loss, A Guide to
    Help Grieving Children. Bristol PA Accelerated
  • Lenhardt, A. C. (1997). Disenfranchised
    grief/hidden sorrow Implications for the school
    counselor. School Counselor, 44(4), 264-271.
  • Mash, E.J. Wolfe, D.A. (2007). Abnormal Child
    Psychology, Third edition. Thomson Wadsworth.

  • Mildner, C. (2003). Coping with death, grief, and
    loss. Retrieved May 21, 2009, from University of
    Iowa Web site http//
  • ORourke, Kathleen Worzbyt, John (1996).
    Support Groups for Children. Bristol, PA
    Accelerated Development, Chapter 10, 301-344.
  • Samide, L.L. Stockton, R. (2002). Letting go of
    grief Bereavement groups for children in a
    school setting. Journal for Specialists in Group
    Work, 27(2), 192-204.
  • Servaty-Seib, H.L., Peterson, J., Spang, D.
    (2003). Notifying individual students of a death
    loss Practical recommendations for schools and
    school counselors. Death Studies, 27, 167-186.
  • Silverstein, Shel (1994). No Difference, Where
    the Sidewalk Ends, Harper Collins Publishers.