The Bereavement Program at St. Louis Children’s Hospital was established in 1994. The following list and the sources of the choices are not comprehensive. Each life, each death, each child, and each relationship is unique. It is our hope that this information about lost and mourning is helpful to you.
- Children Die Too by Joy and Marvin Johnson
A booklet that talks about feelings, dealing with guilt, and facing sadness. There are sections for other children. Supportive reading in a few pages.
- Grieving Grandparents by Sherokee Ilse and Lori Leininger
- For Bereaved Grandparents by Margaret H. Gerner
Grieving Grandparents following miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS or infant death and For Bereaved Grandparents following a grandchild’s death are both booklets that help us understand better the pain of the loss of a grandchild and the pain of seeing your own child suffer.
- When Hello Means Goodbye by Pat Schwiebert, RN, and Paul Kirk, MD
A guide for parents whose child dies before birth, at birth, or shortly after birth. This sensitive booklet is a help to families during the early days of their grief.
- Tear Soup: A Recipe for Healing after Loss by Chuck DeKlyen and Pat Schwiebert
Beautifully illustrated with a complex set of emotions and individual needs explored as the story is told. It also has a list of helpful suggestions and community resources for coping with grief at the end of the book.
- Loss: How Children and Teenagers Can Cope with Death and other kinds of Loss by Medic Publishing Company
It is a small helpful booklet that provides a good overview of how a child views death at various age levels - infant, preschool, school age, and adolescents- along with possible related behaviors, and what you can say or do.
- Help for the Hard Times Getting Through Loss by Earl Hipp
A paperback whose focus audience is teens. It is easy to read and could be a part of a teen bereavement group.
- The Empty Room by Elizabeth De Vita-Raeburn
Reviewed in the June 2008 Compassionate Friends Newsletter. This book review states that it was helpful for the reader to accept the loss of her sister as her own and to identify with repressing some of her own grief in order to support other family members as well as identifying with trying to be a more perfect child to make up for the loss that was felt within the family.
- Helping the Grieving Student: a guide for teachers: a practical guide for dealing with death in your classroom by Jacqueline Rogers
- Helping grieving children at School by Alan D. Wolfelt
Helping the Grieving Student is a book and Helping Grieving Children is an article but both are very helpful to assist school staff in understanding and reaching out to the student and that student’s fellow classmates and teachers after a death.
- Healing Your Traumatized Heart: 100 Practical Ideas after Someone You Love dies a Sudden, Violent Death by Alan Wolfelt
- Suicide of a Child: For parents whose child has completed suicide by Adina Wrobleski
Both Healing your Traumatized Heart (sudden violent death caused by accidents, homicide, and suicide) and Suicide of a Child, speaks to the special aspects of grief to know that you are a good person who has experienced a tragedy, you have rebuilding to do, and you have other people who need you and you need them.
Annie’s Hope: The Bereavement Center for Kids at http://www.annieshope.org/ or 314.965.5015
Bereaved Parents of the USA at http://www.bpusastl.org/ or 314.878.0890
Compassionate Friends at http://www.compassionatefriends.org/ or 630.990.0010
Grief Support Programs at Missouri Baptist Medical Center at http://www.missouribaptist.org/ or 314.996.5105
Kids Clubhouse at http://www.kidsclubhouse.org/ or 314.721.1144
Music (the following three selections speak of several of the emotions of grieving):
Bullens, Cindy; Artemis Records
Somewhere Between Heaven and Earth
Taylor-Good, Karen; Navarre Corporation
On Angel’s Wings
You may find it helpful to “sort out” your thoughts about your child by writing a letter to him or her or you may want to write them in a journal. Express your thoughts and feelings about:
A special memory that I have about you.
What I miss the most about you and our relationship.
What I wish I’d said or hadn’t said.
What I wish we’d done or hadn’t done.
What I’ve had the hardest time dealing with.
Ways in which you continue to live on in me.
Special ways I have for keeping my memories of you alive.
Choose one or several ideas that are important to you or start at the top of the list and work your way down. These topics may serve to help you come up with your own ideas specific to your situation and relationship.
*Copied by permission, Mary Ann Harter Janson, Self-Help Correspondence for the Bereaved, “A Manual for Bereavement Support Programs,” Grand Junction, CO 1983.