When Parents Die: Learning to Live with the Loss of a Parent, 3rd Edition (Paperback) book cover

When Parents Die

Learning to Live with the Loss of a Parent, 3rd Edition

By Rebecca Abrams


264 pages

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pub: 2012-12-06
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The death of a parent marks an emotional and psychological watershed in a person's life. For children and teenagers, the loss of a parent if not handled sensitively can be a lasting trauma, and for adults too, a parent's death can be a tremendous blow.

When Parents Die speaks to bereaved children of all ages. Rebecca Abrams draws on her personal and professional understandings of parental loss, as well as the experiences of many other adults, teenagers and children, to provide the reader with an honest, compassionate and insightful exploration of the experience of losing a parent. The book covers the entire course of grieving, from the immediate aftermath of a parent's death through to the point of recovery, paying particular attention to the many circumstances that can prolong and complicate mourning, including sudden death.

An indispensible aid to the bereaved and the many professionals who work with them, this book is written in a clear and sympathetic style. It has been fully revised for this third edition to take recent research into account.


‘The only way we will ever really understand what it means to grieve is when we learn from those who are bereaved and can share their experience with us. This book is a wonderful example of how Rebecca Abrams used her own experience with death and the grief that followed to help herself and others.’ – Phyllis R. Silverman, Ph.D., Co-Principal Investigator, Harvard Child Bereavement Study, USA.

Table of Contents

Foreword to the Third Edition Introduction 1. My Story 2. First Days, Last Rites 3. Different Deaths, Different Griefs 4. Mourning Time: The First Year 5. Mourning Time: The Second Year and After 6. Changes and Losses: The Private Kind 7. Changes and Losses: The Public Kind 8. Old Grief in New Guises 9. Pathways to the Future Suggested Reading Useful Organizations

About the Author

Rebecca Abrams is an award-winning author of both fiction and non-fiction. She worked as a bereavement counsellor for Cruse Bereavement Care and at the Cheltenham Ladies’ College for a number of years, and she regularly lectures and leads workshops on young people and parental bereavement. She is a tutor in creative writing at the University of Oxford and writer-in-residence at Larkmead School, Abingdon.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
MEDICAL / Allied Health Services / General
MEDICAL / Health Care Delivery
SELF-HELP / Death, Grief, Bereavement