Therese Rando, Ph.D. - Grief Expert

Dr. Therese Rando, author of How To Go On Living When Someone You Love Dies, is a psychologist in Warwick, Rhode Island, where she is the Clinical Director of The Institute for the Study and Treatment of Loss. Having published 70 works pertaining to the clinical aspects of dying, death, loss, and trauma, Dr. Rando is a recognized expert in the field and has appeared on numerous television programs, including “Dateline,” CBS “This Morning,” “Today Show,” “Good Morning, America,” and “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

Articles by Dr. Therese Rando:

The Purpose of Grief and Mourning
Appropriate Expectations You Can Have for Yourself in Grief
Myths About Grief
The Work of Grief
Family Reorganization After a Loss
Adult Loss of a Sibling
Sudden Death
Handling the Holidays
Learning to Live Healthily with Your Loss
What 'Recovery' Will and Will Not Mean




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Comment by Laura on March 22, 2012 at 10:29pm

question: My mother-in-law lost her 29 year old daughter named Rachel 5 years ago.  Mother in law dianne is 57 years old. She isn't over her daughter yet, but worse I think well I'm 100% sure she tries to act like her daughter. Also, her daughter was pregnant when she pasted away and they took the baby early who is now my normal smart 5 year old newphew. but she makes him call her momma and says she talks to rachel in her dreams. Rachel also left us with a 12 year old and 8 year old , they live with me but she wont let the 5 year old move in. I think she acts like her daughter some days and normal others. Her daughter rachel used to party a lot and she does it to and wears her close 5 years later. is it normal. I kno she has to say weirder things whens she is with the 5 year old alone and maybe even tell him she is rachel. and i  think she knows she is doing it and its wrong. i think she needs help do u and what is it? but the only way she can get help is if we go to the dr. and tell her ourselves what she does cause she wont say that

Comment by scott evans on January 30, 2012 at 7:10am

morning dr. my mom passed away last mounth, and she would not talk to my family since my son was born in 1988 with downs,she did not even stay in touch with my other three children,is there some thing i can write in her legacy book that would bring closer to this??thank you

Comment by River of Tears on April 18, 2011 at 5:32am

Transition into what surprises me and scares me too .   Not that it is a constant but they I guess for some would lead to be ones of Anger . Which for me is not anything I ever like or ok do in my life .  Now what am suppose to do with them . as learing how to deal with anger at this age after you family passes away is not and easy thing as if to say I feel like I am now drowning at times .

  Some may say   let it out .. ok to whom around have not wanted to even listen  at all to any of what has happen which has actually been fine in a way. Which did lead me then to Legacy I must have had a need of sorts to get it out some how or at least see and feel for someone else as it felt so selfish in what was happening in just my darkness . Feeling lost and sad all teh time .                         

So now , why am I feeling anger , I actually use the word upset . It does not seem so violent as it seems which to surprises me also .     Have I gone mad ?   Maybe yet all of the feeling are now stirring around in my being yet surprise to me . I am still here and am fuctioning .

This I always said if anyone of my family were to pass I did not think I could make it . Though life somehow chose a  path that none of us knew would happen and took all of them away .  Leaving the one that was not that good to be here on earth taking all the kind and generous ones to heaven .  Does this make sense . I dont think so .  Not that I am angry at God or or lie .  I guess the one I am most angry with is me . For failing . Some how not keeping them here or at least providing all they needed when they were here.  Again Selfish I guess . Yet they all love me and shares their time with me .    

There is the angry issues of course I could pull out of my mind ., as to mention so many of how my mother was treated or sister durning their medical care as well as it was for my father who all should have been treated with respect and with  the best of care . Yet who really is to blame in this all . I guess if to be honest , it is me , one that did not have a voice that was heard so  they all would have recieved what they were suppose to and  wanted not what others chose or them .  Who to be angry at .  Let me see .  this would be me I guess . As they each had intrusted me to take care of things , yet how is it that my voice in life can not be heard .     Well to come to find that I have answered my own qwestion right now , It is me who I am most angry with not what has happen or others .  Yet what to do with this it still is apart of this journey .   No matter if my voice will ever be heard from this day on it will never bring them back , so how to resolve that guilt I do not know .  Life is a strange thing to understand  .   Especially now on this path I walk alone with those who used to be the ones that I could look to as lights in the day that would show me the way of what life could be rather then what it truly was .    The lights are not here , I now have to find not only my voice but maybe my own light in life to walk this journey alone .  My family a blessing a passing at once  gave light to this world and many . To me that were the gift of what it is to be , rather then what some see .  Love were who they were and how they walked in life with grace .

 

 

Comment by River of Tears on March 28, 2011 at 6:05am
It has interested me of how and why now I just do not at all feel apart of my surroundings let alone anywhere to truly be honest . Since the days now have passed and the grief has taken it depths and then gone deeper . I still wonder if I ever will feel apart of the world again .

It sounds funny to hear one say this ," many may ask why would one never feel connected to anything ?" Good question , one I ask myself everyday . I at times do not even feel connect to myself anymore since my sister , mother and father all just passed away . Were they they reason I had to be , were they they my heart and soul that kept my heart beating If so it make sense why I feel so lost . My life seemed to always be something that had apart of what was what I wanted to do or what was that may be that they needed or when was I going to go visits them next . Yet now , all I have is a few more pieces of their luggage that I still store a the things yet can part with . My luggage full of dust since I have not used it since the last day my Sister and I last went to take care of all our mothers things. What now??
Others around me either with good intentions or maybe even need that I am not able to be there as often as I used to be , seem to not quite understand how and why this all would take such a hold on me . Or is it me that does want them to hear to much , so that they do not say once more , " you need to move on " or even roll their eyes as they first did on the day after . Only asking what there was that they could have , rather then what I secretly wished for , was that they asked if there was anything that I needed . Sad isn't it that I would need anything . I guess it was that I hoped it was not like a garage sale that all would come and sift through what they could have rather then to at least say , My Mothers name or Fathers name or my sisters name all the while . yet it was more like when can we get it .
Just felt like so much was taken already .
Though I know each of them would be please if another can make use of what they had and now can use it , it was maybe how this world can be at time . One that move along with out thought or feeling even to take a pause to see more then just what you have .

I am grateful for what I did have which was a blessing that can never be replaced or restored , What it is and will be forever . Is the time and the Love they all gave to me and will forever be held with in . Never to be taken, never to be scorned , never to hurt or have pain . A love I will keep safe inside forever ever even if I never find my place in this world to reside . At least I know now what I was fortunate in life to live with can be one that many may not see , it is one of truly and pure one that is and forever was and is my Family .

Blessing to all of you ..
Comment by River of Tears on March 21, 2011 at 6:36am

I will still find myself to this day thinking about what my Sister and I will be doing tomorrow as though I must have had a block in what is the reality of this all .  She is not here anymore , to call , to to do things with .  To hug to tell her I love you .   The experience of the passing of our Father and Mother was as though the earth was pulled out from under us , yet my Sister and I seemed to move on at least we had each other .  Never expecting either of them to pass when they did nor so close to each other .    Moments when we would catch ourselves tearing up at the same time even with out saying a word because we were both thinking of them at that same time .  Now I sit here alone , empty inside , vast yet filled with great pain .  My sister was  more to me that many may have known she was someone I could trust , someone who loved me for who I was , someone who did not need or ever want for more  . Yet I always wanted to give all I could to her , she was a blessing to me in my life , always a support , always someone to talk to , always one to bring joy and laughter .  Someone who loved both my Mother and Father as I did too .  Now my sister /my best friend in life is not here .  I can not seem to find a place to be . A way to trust a way to know who or what this life is suppose to be .    She seemed to be taken as my parents soon before their time though her passing was of sorts a choice of someone elses .   One I did not want nor tried to stop yet my words my voice was silinced .   Their lives went on , and mine well I know I will always have the memories of time we shared .  The Love we so were blessed with .  I will also hold guilt of how and why when she needed my most why did not anyone listen to what I knew of her . Or what she wanted for her life .  Rather then what made their life easier .   Or what made the Doctors  choose also to go the easy route and go with a voice of someone never in her life .   Why was my voice for her not heard I will not know .  Though I will forever blame myself for I know she wanted to live .       All 3 passing togther months apart .  was this fate or was it is how others wanted it I am not sure ..  What I know for sure is that they are all Angels in Heaven as they were here on earth .     May they know that  what I could not do for them when they were here I  can never make that up to them , nor replace it with doing it for another .   What I hope in all hearts to be known that the blessings and gifts we all have in life are those were are blessed with to share and live life with . Ones  we have a chance to love and  give to and be with .   As time is not ours to own it is ours for us to care for as in the same are , the loved ones we are blessed with in life . 

 

 

Comment by River of Tears on March 21, 2011 at 6:36am

I will still find myself to this day thinking about what my Sister and I will be doing tomorrow as though I must have had a block in what is the reality of this all .  She is not here anymore , to call , to to do things with .  To hug to tell her I love you .   The experience of the passing of our Father and Mother was as though the earth was pulled out from under us , yet my Sister and I seemed to move on at least we had each other .  Never expecting either of them to pass when they did nor so close to each other .    Moments when we would catch ourselves tearing up at the same time even with out saying a word because we were both thinking of them at that same time .  Now I sit here alone , empty inside , vast yet filled with great pain .  My sister was  more to me that many may have known she was someone I could trust , someone who loved me for who I was , someone who did not need or ever want for more  . Yet I always wanted to give all I could to her , she was a blessing to me in my life , always a support , always someone to talk to , always one to bring joy and laughter .  Someone who loved both my Mother and Father as I did too .  Now my sister /my best friend in life is not here .  I can not seem to find a place to be . A way to trust a way to know who or what this life is suppose to be .    She seemed to be taken as my parents soon before their time though her passing was of sorts a choice of someone elses .   One I did not want nor tried to stop yet my words my voice was silinced .   Their lives went on , and mine well I know I will always have the memories of time we shared .  The Love we so were blessed with .  I will also hold guilt of how and why when she needed my most why did not anyone listen to what I knew of her . Or what she wanted for her life .  Rather then what made their life easier .   Or what made the Doctors  choose also to go the easy route and go with a voice of someone never in her life .   Why was my voice for her not heard I will not know .  Though I will forever blame myself for I know she wanted to live .       All 3 passing togther months apart .  was this fate or was it is how others wanted it I am not sure ..  What I know for sure is that they are all Angels in Heaven as they were here on earth .     May they know that  what I could not do for them when they were here I  can never make that up to them , nor replace it with doing it for another .   What I hope in all hearts to be known that the blessings and gifts we all have in life are those were are blessed with to share and live life with . Ones  we have a chance to love and  give to and be with .   As time is not ours to own it is ours for us to care for as in the same are , the loved ones we are blessed with in life . 

 

 

Comment by River of Tears on March 5, 2011 at 5:27am

Dear Dr Rando , and Legacy Members ,

   How do you find purpose after someone you loved so much has passed away , aside from the  purpose of the grief , pain and deep hole you may be in .  How does one even feel that they can be someone that can give to others rather then Not .    Especially when entire family is now gone. 

    How can one even look beyond what is , and see what can be .   Is it that you have to climb a bit higher out of the depth until you see a possibility or is it you would already know as you knew before when your loved ones were alive .     

   No matter what the cause or person , I know it will never be the ones I love but how to give completely so that they know that you are present rather like so many are just because it is a job , it looks good in the papers or something more .  How do you become present in your own life .   

   Problem is , how do I move from functioning to living may be a question that would have been more appropriate to ask .   

 

 If to only to be present in a life I was blessed with then maybe I can be there for another once again . Though I know it will never be the loved ones I was I was so blessed with in life my Sister , Mother and Father .  All who gave me purpose in life to love dearly each and every moment of each day as well as wanting to  give.

Thank you

Please take care

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