Center for Grief Recovery

The Center for Grief Recovery is a full service, non-profit nationwide Counseling Center helping persons who are dealing with emotionally intense experiences such as Grief, Loss, Trauma, Depression or Abuse. You can learn more at

David Fireman is the director of the Center for Grief Recovery and a contributor to LegacyConnect. Read David's blog.

Articles from the Center for Grief Recovery:
The Grief Experience
Comfort Quickies: Self Care While Grieving
Grief in the Workplace: An Outline for Helping
Managing the Holidays


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Comment by Patricia Towle on July 13, 2012 at 10:27am

How do you grieve for someone you are not allowed legally to speak about? When you are told you cannot speak about a person, it makes things a little more difficult especially when asked how, why, when, etc. All we do at the moment is play music that reminds us of him, who was ripped from us needlessly at a very young age, not to mention, he was quite healthy..

Comment by Linnea on January 14, 2012 at 12:20am

I don't know how to edit my comment. What I meant to say is that folks in some third world countries are so surrounded by family that they are never alone...I said very alone...which they are not. Also meant to say I wanted to get on a plane to see my friend.....not get on a place...sorry for the confusion...

Comment by Linnea on January 14, 2012 at 12:14am

Hello All,

Thanks for posting your experience of grief as it is helping me quite a bit. My mom passed a couple months ago.  Her death was difficult and so I feel like I am dealing with this as well. I had hoped for an easy passing for her but did not happen.  She was 96. 

What has surprised me more then anything is that folks, friends and family did not call or contact me after a couple days. I don't have kids or family in the area so it has made her absense even more intense.  I did get quite a few emails on FB but other then this nothing.

I told me friend overseas about this experience.  I said I remember as a child, 50+ years ago things seemed different.  When my grandmother passed so many people came by the house. I was 9 or so and remember the experience well.  My friend, who lives in a 3rd world country said that where he lives they don't have "grief counseling".  He stated everyone is so connected with large families that when someone dies the grieving one is very alone.  And if someone is left all alone in the world after their loved one passes then another family will adopt them. I was astonished to say the least. 

I wanted to get on a place to live where he does asap and get adopted.

And is got me thinking.  Some of us are isolated whether we have family or not with our grief in this society.  So our grief is normal but society just does not know how to deal with it. 

No one calls me, I feel others avoid talking with me now. I did not mention my mom to them or talk much about what I was feeling.  Folks in general just don't know what to day.  It is amazing.

Thanks for the sharing here. At first when I did not hear from anyone I thought it was me but now I realize this is how grief is handled now in the US. Sad really.

I will update my story when I move to be with my friend overseas.   


Comment by Diane Kramli (silvay) on November 1, 2011 at 12:54pm
my mom passed way March 11,2011. I wasnt notified about her death. My two rival siblings delete me off my mom "legacy". they would not let me or mom's brother, family, friends see, talk, comfort my mom at all.  they forbid, delete me from my mom life last eight years. I am still greiving, angry and not believing this. She had to died all alone out there in the middle of nowhere in SC. However, we had greatest memorial service, my mom brother held in New Jersey on May 23, 2011 which I am grateful for. still waiting for truth come out of what happened. I was told she been asking for me all the time and couldn't get to me because of those siblings. I m wishing so many things to go back and did something. she was calling me on feb 11, 2011 so I went to NJ to find out that my mom was dead follwing month. I was too late. Till today I cant let it go and even believe it. Miss her dearly. must be something out there that I am not aware of because I was left behind, deleted, disowned and forbidded. This grief experience will not be heal, I believe because nothing can bring  my mom back. I cant wait to see her again up above with her wing open for me to hug her again. She is sweetest mom, very patience, loving mom. I want to be added as her daughter but I dont know how with this in I cant believe how the siblings think they can delete me, decide who s her daughter whos not. I repeatly remind them I m her MOM TOO!! ;-/
Comment by Kristina D on July 6, 2011 at 8:01am

okay, so, here we go. I lost my husband of 25 years on April 21 2009. He died from cancer, one month from diagnosis to he passing. One month from normal life to my living nightmare. Previous to this diagnosis, he was diagnosed with another cancer, had operation, and we were told his prognosis was good they could almost guarantee they had got it all. A little over 8 months later, he was diagnosed with a second primary cancer, and this one killed him. It was fast and brutal.

2 years on and people think I should be moving on, nobody calls and asks how I am, in fact that ceased quite early, maybe in the first 6 months. I have a bf, I do what needs to be done in life, I laugh, spend time with my 3 beautiful girls and my lovel grandaughter.  Sometimes I think I am getting a grip on this grief thing, but other times I think I am fooling myself and everyone around me. I am constantly in the grip of sadness, it is this deep well inside of me, it holds me and it wont let me go. Even when I am laughing, enjoying my childrens company, doing something with my bf, I look fine on the outside, but there is an undercurrent of pain to everything. I miss him so very much, there is still a lot of guilt about things, even though my head tells me I should not feel guilty. There is still a lot of anger about many things, even though I tell myself I should no longer be angry. And always the pain.

I have anxiety now. I used to be a strong person, made decisions, both big and small, with relative ease in my life. Always sure things would work out in the end. Now I have no confidence in my ability to make the big decisions about things and any time I try, the anxiety kicks in. I have not slept properly, not one single night, for at least 3 years. I feel lonely, all the time, even when I am with those who care about me.

In the end, I guess I am just wandering lost in my life, and I hate it, I hate feeling lost, I hate my lack of confidence, and I am so very, very tired of the constant pain.



Comment by D'Andrea Prater on February 22, 2011 at 5:14pm

My husband of 27 years passed away on January 23- 2011 at the age of 47.

I've been in so much pain I didn't even know I lost twenty pounds.

How do I control this hurt?

 I walk from room to room with no purpose know idea what to do.

Life is going on around me and I can't seem to move.


Comment by River of Tears on January 31, 2011 at 6:46am

Thank you for the benifit of advise you offer all even those who may not share , for even I am surprise that I find myself here sharing for one that keeps all inside for the one that I trusted most in life to talk to is no longer here , my dear and special Special Sister .  One who I shared the journey in life with to share all the good and the bad with .  Always there on the phone or by my side as I was for her .  Now my words seem to be silenced for no one wants to hear of her or the pain .   So coming here and reading what the many have shared and sadly though have have had to go my heary breaks yet I find guidance some how that even in the writing that the tears I have do have meaning as she did .   As the many loved ones that are mentioned .   That they memories of them carry on not only the heart of their family and friends but now all us . 

Again thank you for what you are doing as simple as it may seem to some if only to know that what you do mean so much to those that are here .


take care

Comment by Nyjha Mekeeda on July 25, 2010 at 12:58am
Hi I'm not really sure how to start I want to cry now to even think about the passing of my mom,she my mom fought for a long time with her ailment. My moms name is Roberta L.Bryant all I can remember her saying is she had to be home by wednesday and her sounding better even laughing,just for her to get sick again and you might as well say a coma for 2weeks and the list goes on. Story short I and my sister and all her grand babies lost my mom on July 6,2010 around 6pm I cant stop crying or thinking about it and what makes it worse is that I was not by her bed said when I promised I would............what do I do I truly feel lost.
Comment by David Fireman on January 28, 2010 at 5:55am
Violet: In Paul Bennett's book called, Loving Grief, he talks about the "howl" of grief. It sounds like you are experiencing this deep and unbearable ache. When in this state, see if you can just follow one breath at a time. Even staying connected to one breath can be the thinnest of life lines during this time. Also, when you can, try to think of grief as a process, not a condition. It does moderate after some time. Life does re-stabilize. But it might take some proactive steps on your part. Consider meeting with a professional if your symptoms don't ease up. Also, if you haven't already take a look at the Taking Care of Yourself article on our blog.
Comment by violet la pollo on December 16, 2009 at 5:40pm
hi david ,my husband passed away dec20 2007 and buried christmas eve,I am beside myself with greif ,last night I though I was having aheartattack,I have had 2already but my greif is so unbearable I just laid ther with the pain,unable to breathe normally and knew I was dying but I did not care,the only sad part I thouth was of my grown children and how upset they would be and for that I cried but I am useless ,waste of space at 69,there is no helping no matter what I try and as I laid there with such pain my most precious thought would that I would soon be out of this greif and not have to suffer this horrible loss,some friends think I am crazy after all this time but I cannot help myself I know I am losing control and dont care ,is there anything positive you could tell me to help me through this worse week of my life and on christmas eve leaving my loved one alone I feel so guilty but I had no choice but to bury him on that day because the cancer was eating away at him and the funeral home said if I waited a few days I would not be able to have an open viewing and that would have killed me thankyou for reading and sorry it was so long VIOLET
Comment by Leslie L. Fiorda on November 26, 2009 at 10:16pm
Hi David,
I have been on this site only but a few months, and it has helped me alot. My son Jordan, and his girlfriend died in a car accident on 4-29-07. Bryant, a young man I have known since he was very small; was in the accident w/them. He is the only surviver. I love Bryant as though he was one of mine. He was in a coma for awhile and He lost an eye in this crash. He almost had to have his leg cut off too. He bounced right back, against what the doctors told us. (He would never walk, and couldnt start therepy for 8 or 9 months) He is doing great. Despite the odds he had against him. He is not well emotionally though. I think he feels guilty that he lived. Do you have any advise for "survivers guilt". I was talking with him today, and he is still so very sad. Thank you......Leslie

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