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When someone dies, those left behind are expected to grieve. But, as taboo as it is to admit, not every death brings great sadness. Labeled "nontraditional grief response" by therapists and counselors, a positive reaction following a death is becoming more common, especially now that drugs and medical treatments keep people alive much longer than they or their families might wish. Sometimes we are relieved that our loved one is no longer suffering; at the other end of the spectrum, a death might finally free us of an abusive or unhappy relationship. In either case, the cultural expectation for sadness, loneliness, and despair only adds to the guilt and conflict felt by many "relieved grievers."Authors Jennifer Elison and Chris McGonigle have lived through their own "liberating losses." Illuminating for the first time a reaction that many deem insensitive, inappropriate, or strange, Ellison and McGonigle share their own and others' stories, thoughtful clinical analysis, and pragmatic counsel. Wise, compassionate, and groundbreaking, Liberating Losses expands the traditional definition of grief and, in so doing, generously validates the feelings that so many feel obliged to hide.
About the Author
Jennifer Elison, Ed.D., has been a grief and transition counselor in private practice since 1990. She lives in Montana. Chris McGonigle, Ph.D., is the author of Surviving Your Spouse's Chronic Illness and has been a Widowed Persons Service volunteer for many years. She lives in Montana.