But I Didn't Say Goodbye: Helping Children and Families After a Suicide

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9781892906014: But I Didn't Say Goodbye: Helping Children and Families After a Suicide

But I Didn t Say Goodbye is a book seen through the eyes of Alex, an eleven-year-old boy, whose father has died by suicide. This story is a glimpse into a child s traumatic and life changing personal experience. But I Didn t Say Goodbye introduces you to a bereaved family immediately after a suicide and ends five years later. The dialogue in each chapter will show you how you can help develop honest, open communication between children and the people in their lives. Alex s questions are the same as many other children following a suicide. Chapter 1, The Worst Day, focuses on the difficulty and emotional strain involved in telling children that someone they loved has died by suicide. Chapter 2, The Next Day, identifies the concerns children may think about and share as they search for answers as to why someone died by suicide. Chapter 3, Talking About the Funeral, illustrates the process of explaining funeral ceremonies and burial procedures to children. Chapter 4, Telling a Friend What Happened, explores the importance of sharing one s story for the first time. You will compare the bereavement experience of a five-year-old child, an eleven-year-old adolescent and fourteen-year-old teenager. Chapter 5, A Mourning Ritual, focuses on healing rituals adults can share with bereaved children. Chapter 6, Grandma s Special Gift, shows the significance of giving bereaved children special objects that once belonged to the deceased. You will identify how objects, individuals, and locations are capable of making children feel safe. Chapter 7, When Grief Hurts, takes a look at the grief response in children after a suicide. You will list ways to explain the grief process to children to help them cope with their painful feelings. Chapter 8, Catching Up with Coach, focuses on caring adults recognizing fears in grieving children and explaining ways to cope with those fears. Chapter 9, One Month Later, describes issues related to blame. Chapter 10, Six Months Later, identifies the benefit of bereavement counseling. Chapter 11, One Year Anniversary, reviews the lessons that have helped shape a child s experience a year after the suicide. Chapter 12, Five Years Later, illustrates ways to cope with triggers and continue the bond with the deceased five years after the suicide. A Resources section includes a list of books for bereaved children, teens, parents and professionals, bereavement resources and support after a suicide, information on how to locate adult bereavement support groups after a suicide, grief programs for children, teens, and families, sources to obtain financial information after a sudden death, and the national suicide prevention lifeline number.

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About the Author:

Barbara Rubel, MA, BCETS, CBS, CPBC is a nationally recognized bereavement specialist and author of the 30 hour continuing education course book for Nurses, Death, Dying, and Bereavement, sold through Western Schools. Three weeks prior to giving birth to triplets, Barbara s father, a retired NY Police Officer, died by suicide. Her story was featured in the Emmy award winning Documentary, Fatal Mistakes, narrated by Mariette Hartley and sold through the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Barbara is a Consultant for the U.S. Dept. of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime, and co-author of the OVC Compassion Fatigue curriculum. She wrote a chapter, A Doctor s Note, In H. Stone. (Ed.), Remembering our Angel, 2007. She created and developed the Palette of Grief® Program. Barbara is a Board Certified Expert in Traumatic Stress and Diplomate, American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress. Rubel is a Certified Bereavement Specialist, a Certified Pastoral Bereavement Counselor and is trained in Critical Incident Stress Management. She received her BS in Psychology and MA in Community Health with a concentration in Thanatology from Brooklyn College. Barbara was a Hospice Pastoral Bereavement Counselor and facilitated several bereavement support groups. In 1995, she created Sharing Our Loss After Suicide (SOLAS) bereavement support group, which she facilitated for several years. She taught courses at Brooklyn College including Crisis Intervention, Children and Death, and Health Counseling. Barbara served as a Consultant for the NJ Office of the Attorney General and UBHC, UMDNJ to support those impacted by September 11th.

Review:

This is an extraordinary resource to help children deal with the difficult often hidden and stigmatizing after effects of suicide-one that is honest and respectful of the child s intelligence and resiliency. This new edition includes even more information and resources making it an essential tool for anyone who is helping children and families cope with this most difficult loss. I strongly recommend it. --Kenneth J. Doka, PhD, Professor of Gerontology, College of New Rochelle, NY, Senior Consultant Hospice Foundation of America

But I Didn't Say Goodbye is an inspiring chronicle of the five year journey of an eleven- year-old suicide survivor . . .Barbara Rubel presents a powerful portrait of the myriad of thoughts and feelings so common to those of all ages after the death of a friend or family member by suicide. --Linda Goldman, Author, Life and Loss, Breaking the Silence, Bart Speaks Out, Raising our Children to be Resilient and Coming Out, Coming In

This is a must have book on a much neglected topic: helping children cope and heal after suicide loss . . . As someone who works in the area of childhood grief, I am so pleased to find such a valuable resource. --Heidi Horsley, PsyD, Author, with Eric Hipple and Gloria Horsley, Real Men Do Cry: A Quarterback s Inspiring Story of Tackling Depression and Surviving Suicide Loss. Licensed Psychologist, Radio Show Host: Healing the Grieving Heart, Executive Director:

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