The Long Goodbye: Grieving Someone with Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer's

My husband and I have been binge-watching the TV show The West Wing.  If you don’t know about this fictional show from the late ’90s, it’s awesome!  It’s about the behind-the-scenes of the presidency, including the staff and their roles, and all the many stressful things the West Wing deals with while the rest of us go about our day.  Recently, one of the episodes we watched was about the Press Secretary and her father’s battle with Alzheimer’s disease.  The name of the episode was “The Long Goodbye”. This episode not only made me think about my own experiences with Alzheimer’s, but also my clients.  I have so many clients who have loved ones that have received this diagnosis.  Caring...

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What to do When You Experience Grief

grief

A little bit of self-disclosure here: I have experienced a lot of grief in the past few years of my life.  Prior to these losses, I felt like grief and loss was a topic that I fully understood, and could help others process in their own lives.  With the losses in my own life, my empathy and understanding have reached a whole other level I didn’t know possible.  I truly believe that God can use hard and awful things to give us the ability to help others. Two years ago I wrote a blog on grief that you can read here.  While many of the things I talked about are still true, I wanted to expand on a few things...

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What is Ambiguous Loss?

ambiguous

Have you ever experienced a loss in your life, that wasn’t an actual death of a friend or loved one?  This feeling and experience is called Ambiguous Loss.  Ambiguous Loss is best described as a loss that isn’t concrete. Ambiguous Loss will often lead to you experiencing the Stages of Grief. The stages are Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and (eventually) Acceptance.  Some of the most common causes of Ambiguous Loss are job loss, divorces, miscarriages, illnesses, and trauma. Here are some examples of what Ambiguous Loss may look and feel like: A new client starts therapy because a loved one disappeared in a drowning accident.  The body of this loved one was never recovered.  However, the family is moving forward...

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Do You Know How to Grieve?

grieve

I’ve recently experienced the loss of a loved one in my life. I’m sure many of you can relate to how it feels. It’s the kind of loss that makes you realize that nothing is ever going to be the same. The kind of loss that changes who you are forever. I’m realizing that grief is fluid. It ebbs and flows. It hits out of nowhere and it hits hard. A song, a memory, even driving by a particular restaurant can trigger tears. Sometimes it even feels weird to laugh or be happy. It’s hard when the rest of the world continues on while your world has literally stopped. I wanted to share with you something that’s been helpful for...

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