Author Archives: Dr. Robert Neimeyer

“My son took his own life…”

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My 17 year old son took his own life not even a month ago. I find I can’t even type the details. He used a shotgun in our basement. Our whole family  found him shortly afterwards. I recently read about “atypical depression” which very well described Edward’s condition. He was doing well.

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Mourning a Former Spouse: Disenfranchised Grief

Mourning a Former Spouse Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My ex-husband and I were married for 25 years, together 28. We raised four children together. He was charming, sociable, affectionate, intelligent and silly. We enjoyed numerous good times. Toward the end, however, he became abusive and I made excuses to stay. After he took out his anger

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Anticipatory grief, when a loved one is dying

Dealing with Anticipatory Grief Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My question is about anticipatory grief, the distress that family members can feel when a loved one is receiving end-of-life care. I work in a palliative care unit of a large hospital, and we often have families who are overwhelmed with the reality of the patient’s impending death,

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Five Principles for Managing Grief in the New Year

Dear Dr. Neimeyer– My husband died just over a year ago, so on January 1st I will start my second year without him, and I am not looking forward to it.  It’s not that I am immobilized by grief, as I have gotten better across the months in that department, and actually feel pretty good

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Grieving for a Husband/Father During Holiday Season

Grieving for a Husband/Father During the Holidays Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My husband Don died 9 months ago after a rapid decline; and his lungs basically stopped working, even with oxygen treatments.  His death has been hard for us as a family in many ways, as he lived only about 6 months after getting the diagnosis, and

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Does Continuing Bonds Therapy Really Work

Does continuing bonds therapy really work? Dear Dr. Neimeyer, A good deal of my practice with grieving clients is influenced by your work and that of your colleagues like Dennis Klass on the idea of continuing bonds–the concept that bereaved people really are striving to maintain their attachment to deceased loved ones who have died

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Three suggestions for dealing with insensitive consolations

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My husband, Joseph, has been gone less than a year, and I can’t believe the stupid things people say to me, trying to make me “feel better.”  “Time heals all wounds–you just need to stay busy,” “You’ve got to look on the bright side; at least you had him all these years,”

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My Daughter was Murdered

Dear Dr. Neimeyer, My daughter was murdered by the father of her children. Her children at the time were a toddler and an infant. It’s now seven years later. My daughter was just 21 years old. I had to go get my granddaughter’s things out of the apartment she was murdered in, so it was

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Grieving and the Events in Paris

Dear Dr. Niemeyer, I feel I am grieving about the horrific terror in Paris. I am grieving about the lives lost, and the lives changed.The grief I feel about this is that it is not the first time, and probably won’t be the last. How do I insulate myself and move on from these feelings knowing terror

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