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Ambiguous Loss: Learning to Live with Unresolved Grief

Ambiguous Loss: Learning to Live with Unresolved Grief Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Frozen sadness: this is what we have when we cannot really know what we have lost. And this is what Pauline Boss illuminates, and helps to ease, in Ambiguous Loss, an original and humane account of the ravages of uncertainty faced when we lose a loved one through divorce, adoption, addiction, chronic mental illness, immigration, or Alzheimer's. With sensitivity and lucidity, Boss explores the tumultuous emotions stirred up by such losses, especially the wide fluctuations between hope and hopelessness. Drawing on her research and clinical experience, Boss suggests strategies that can cushion the pain and offers heartening narratives of those who cope with ambiguous losses and manage to move on. A compassionate exploration of the effects of ambiguous loss and how those experiencing it handle this most devastating of losses ... Boss's approach is to encourage families to talk together, to reach a consensus about how to mourn that which has been lost and how to celebrate that which remains. Her simple stories of families doing just that contain lessons for all. Insightful, practical, and refreshingly free of psychobabble. --Kirkus Reviews Combining her talents as a compassionate family therapist and a creative researcher, Pauline Boss eloquently shows the many and complex ways that people can cope with the inevitable losses in contemporary family life. A wise book, and certain to become a classic. --Constance R. Ahrons, author of The Good Divorce

Book News Annotation:

Deals with emotions surrounding ambiguous losses, such as the gradual loss of a family member to Alzheimer's disease, or the unresolved loss of a family whose son is reported missing in action. Suggests strategies that can cushion the pain and help families come to terms with their grief. Case stories offer heartening narratives of people who learn to cope with ambiguous loss, including those who have lost due to divorce, immigration, adoption, chronic mental illness, and brain injury. Lacks a subject index. The author is a professor of family social science at the University of Minnesota, and a psychotherapist in private practice.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

When a loved one dies we mourn our loss. We take comfort in the rituals that mark the passing, and we turn to those around us for support. But what happens when there is no closure, when a family member or a friend who may be still alive is lost to us nonetheless? How, for example, does the mother whose soldier son is missing in action, or the family of an Alzheimer's patient who is suffering from severe dementia, deal with the uncertainty surrounding this kind of loss?

In this sensitive and lucid account, Pauline Boss explains that, all too often, those confronted with such ambiguous loss fluctuate between hope and hopelessness. Suffered too long, these emotions can deaden feeling and make it impossible for people to move on with their lives. Yet the central message of this book is that they can move on. Drawing on her research and clinical experience, Boss suggests strategies that can cushion the pain and help families come to terms with their grief. Her work features the heartening narratives of those who cope with ambiguous loss and manage to leave their sadness behind, including those who have lost family members to divorce, immigration, adoption, chronic mental illness, and brain injury. With its message of hope, this eloquent book offers guidance and understanding to those struggling to regain their lives.

About the Author

<>Pauline Bossis Professor of Family Social Science at the <>University of Minnesota, past President of the <>National Council on Family Relations, and a psychotherapist in private practice.

Table of Contents

1. Frozen Grief

2. Leaving without Goodbye

3. Goodbye without Leaving

4. Mixed Emotions

5. Ups and Downs

6. The Family Gamble

7. The Turning Point

8. Making Sense out of Ambiguity

9. The Benefit of a Doubt

Notes

Acknowledgments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674017382
Subtitle:
Learning to Live with Unresolved Grief
Author:
Boss, Pauline
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Location:
Cambridge, Mass. :
Subject:
Interpersonal Relations
Subject:
Family
Subject:
Death, Grief, Bereavement
Subject:
Grief
Subject:
Loss (psychology)
Subject:
Loss
Subject:
General Psychology & Psychiatry
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Includes bibliographical references p. 143-151.
Publication Date:
January 1999
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
None
Pages:
176
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.5 in .82 lb

Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Self-Help » Grief

Ambiguous Loss: Learning to Live with Unresolved Grief
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 176 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674017382 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , When a loved one dies we mourn our loss. We take comfort in the rituals that mark the passing, and we turn to those around us for support. But what happens when there is no closure, when a family member or a friend who may be still alive is lost to us nonetheless? How, for example, does the mother whose soldier son is missing in action, or the family of an Alzheimer's patient who is suffering from severe dementia, deal with the uncertainty surrounding this kind of loss?

In this sensitive and lucid account, Pauline Boss explains that, all too often, those confronted with such ambiguous loss fluctuate between hope and hopelessness. Suffered too long, these emotions can deaden feeling and make it impossible for people to move on with their lives. Yet the central message of this book is that they can move on. Drawing on her research and clinical experience, Boss suggests strategies that can cushion the pain and help families come to terms with their grief. Her work features the heartening narratives of those who cope with ambiguous loss and manage to leave their sadness behind, including those who have lost family members to divorce, immigration, adoption, chronic mental illness, and brain injury. With its message of hope, this eloquent book offers guidance and understanding to those struggling to regain their lives.

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