Pathfinder: Resources on Grief and Healing for Adults and Children
This pathfinder will focus on resources regarding healing from loss and managing grief. There are many resources in the library that may be able to help those in bereavement. Those interested in laws and customs in Jewish mourning, particularly halachah, should look at section BM712. Most resources meant to provide support and comfort to those in mourning are in section BF575; books on explaining death to children and teenagers are under BF723. These materials are personal, memoir-style accounts of grief and loss, often written poetically, as well as resources from the Jewish tradition looking for insight and comfort.
Adult, Print Resources
Bing, Claudine. Painting out of Sorrow. Font and Center Press, Weston, MA, 1999. BF575 .G7B49. Summary: A book that helps those in mourning cope through artwork and self-expression. The author is a member of Temple Israel.
Blank, Jeanne Webster. The Death of an Adult Child: A book For and About Bereaved Parents. Baywood Publishing Company, Amityville, MI, 1998. BF575 .G7B53. Summary: A valuable and rare resource which focuses on bereaved parents who have lost an adult child.
Brener, Anne. Mourning and Mitzvah: A Guided Journal For Walking the Mourner's Path Through Grief to Healing. Jewish Lights Publishing, Woodstock, VT, 1993. BM712 .B7. Summary: This book draws on mystical traditions within Judaism to help free mourners of the grief in a Jewish way. It includes practical exercises as well as spiritual wisdom.
Brisson, Barbara Schiff. Such is the way of the World: A Journey Through Grief. Paulist Press, Mahwah, NJ, 1997. BF575 .G7B7. Summary: A personal account of grief with coping advice for the reader.
Diamant, Anita. Saying Kaddish: How to Comfort the Dying, Bury the Dead and Mourn as a Jew. Schocken Books, New York, NY, 1998. BM712 .D53. Summary: This book from acclaimed author Anita Diamant explains how to turn Jewish rituals into sources of great comfort for the bereaved. It also explains Jewish mourning customs in an accessible and palatable way. Recommended over the more esoteric explanations of Jewish mourning practice.
Fein, Leonard. Against the Dying of the Light: A Father's Journey Through Loss. Jewish Lights Publishing, Woodstock, VT, 2001. BF575 .G7F4. Summary: A personal account of a father’s loss of his thirty year old daughter, this poetic memoir helps the reader cope with their own tragedies through Jewish tradition and personal experiences.
Gordon, Sol. "Is there anything I can do?": Helping a Friend When Times are Tough. Delcorte Press, New York, NY, 1994. BF575 .F66G6. Summary: A rare book of advice for friends of those in grief or difficult situations, this book provides a wealth of advice for a variety of different situations, from mourning to escaping abuse.
Greenberg, Sidney. A Treasury of Comfort. Hartmore House, Hartford, CT, 1969. BF575 .G7G68. Summary: This collection of wisdom and guidance draws on the best of Jewish tradition, from Midrash to modern poets. Despite its age, the book is still a valuable resource.
Grollman, Earl. Bereaved Children and Teens: A Support Guide for Parents and Professionals. Beacon Press, Boston, MA, 1995. BF723 .D3G7. Summary: An important book explaining how to explain death to children and help them deal with loss as a parent. It draws upon material Grollman has used in older books.
Grollman, Earl. Straight Talk about Death for Teenagers: How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love. Beacon Press, Boston, MA, 1993. BF724.3 .G73G76. Summary: Suggests ways to deal with the grief and other emotions felt after the death of a love one and to discover how to go on living.
Grollman, Earl. What Helped Me When My Loved One Died. Beacon Press, Boston, MA, 1981. BF575 .G7G76. Summary: A collection of essays from people involved in various ways with mourning different loved ones, focusing on what helped them recover.
Kushner, Harold. When Bad Things Happen to Good People. NY: Schocken Books, 1981. A personal account of dealing with unjust tragedy, and how the author achieved peace of mind, discussing the questions of life and death, and testing faith. 1981.
Excerpt from the above book, from My Jewish Learning: http://www.myjewishlearning.com/beliefs/Theology/Suffering_and_Evil/Responses/Modern_Solutions/When_Bad_Things_Happen.shtml
Liebman, Joshua Loth Peace of Mind. NY: Simon & Schuster. 1946.
From the author, who was the Senior Rabbi of Temple Israel, Boston, from 1939-1948. It may seem strange for a man to write a book about peace of mind in this age of fierce turmoil and harrowing doubts. I have written this book in the conviction that social peace can never be permanently achieved so long as individuals engage in civil war with themselves. In this book I try to present some answers that have proved helpful to me about the universal human dilemmas of conscience, love, fear, grief, and God-- crucial problems that present themselves in every kind of society, and, I believe, will present themselves as long as man is man. --Joshua Loth Liebman BF636 .L47
Linzer, Norman. Understanding Bereavement and Grief. Yeshiva University Press, New York, NY, 1974. BF575 .G7U5. Summary: A collection of essays from various perspectives regarding grief, including the position of each person in the process, such as a widow, widower, parent, nurse, etc. Also provides a wealth of spiritual resources in the first section.
Mandell, Sherri. The Blessing of a Broken Heart. Toby Press, New Milford, CT, 2003. BF575 .G7M3. Summary: The account of a mother whose children were murdered in the Judean desert, this book, recommended by the Jerusalem Post, follows the journey of their mother to gain healing and hope in the context of Jewish tradition.
McCracken, Ann and Semel, Mary. A Broken Heart Still Beats: After Your Child Dies. Hazelden Publishers, Central City, MN, 1998. BF575 .G7B74. Summary: A powerful collection of essays from a wide variety of contributors, from Anna Quindlen to Mark Twain, on managing the grief that comes from the loss of a child. This book has received some critical acclaim and is highly recommended.
Rapoport, Nessa. A Woman's Book of Grieving. William Morrow and Company, New York, NY, 1994. BF575 .G7R358. Summary: A book that delves straight into difficult emotions and by its own admission avoids escapism, Nessa Rapoport uses poetic language and women’s friendship to cope with grief.
Rimer, Jack. Jewish Insights on Death and Mourning, Schocken Books, New York, NY, 1995. BM635.4 .W73. Summary: A valuable book that provides comfort and insight on death and mourning using Jewish traditions and sources.
Silverman, William and Cinnamon, Kenneth. When Mourning Comes: A Book of Comfort for the Grieving. Jason Aronson Inc., Northvale, NJ, 1990. BF575 .G7S54. Summary: A collection of comforting poetry, meditations and self-help for a mourner from various traditions, including Jewish texts.
Wolfson, Ron. A Time to Mourn, A Time to Comfort. Federation of Jewish Men, New York, NY, 1993. BF575 .G75W6. Summary: A collection of articles about death and mourning including: the process of dying, medical issues and Jewish law, miscarriage, AIDS-related death, grief, funerals, Kaddish, Shiva, Shloshim, Yizkor.
Children's Print Resources
Buscaglia, Leo. The fall of Freddie the leaf : a story for all ages. CB Slack, 1982. As Freddie experiences the changing seasons along with his companion leaves, he learns about the delicate balance between life and death. Pic Bus.
Dennison, Amy. After You Lose Someone You Love: Advice and Insight from the Diaries of Three Kids Who’ve Been There. Free Spirit Publishing, Minneapolis, MN, 2005. j .BF575 .G7D46. Summary: An accessible book on grief for children focusing on the diaries and experiences of three other children who have lost loved ones.
Gellman, Marc. Lost and Found: A Kid's Book for Living Through Loss. Morrow Junior books, New York, NY, 1999. j. BV4905.2 .G44. Summary: A book focusing on the impact that death has on children and how they can come away from mourning as stronger individuals. Includes a workbook and illustrations.
Grollman, Earl. Talking about Death: A Dialogue Between Parent and Child. Beacon Press, Boston, MA, 1990. j .BF723 .D3G72. Summary: A children's edition of Earl Grollman's book Talking about Death, this guide helps children come to cope with the death of others.
Gootman, Marilyn E. When A Friend Dies: A Book for Teens About Grieving and Healing. Free Spirit Publishing, Minneapolis, MN, 1994. p-b YA Goo. Summary: A resource for young adults on help and consolation after the loss of a friend.
Krementz, Jill. How it Feels When A Parent Dies, Knopf Publishing, New York, NY, 1981. j .BF723 .O3K73. Summary: Eighteen young people ranging in age from seven to sixteen discuss the questions, fears and bereavement they experienced when one of their parents died.
Lanton, Sandy. Daddy's Chair. Kar-Ben Copies, Rockville, MD, 1991. Pic Lan. Summary: The story of a child coping with the death of his father while observing Jewish mourning rituals and remembering the positive things about life.
LeShan, Eda J. Learning to say Good-by: When a Parent Dies, MacMillan Publishing, New York, NY, 1976. j. BF723 .D3L4. Summary: Discusses the fears, questions and fantasies many children experience when a parent or someone close to them dies.
Liss-Levinson, Nechama. When a Grandparent Dies: A Kid's Own Workbook for Dealing with Shiva and the Year Beyond. Jewish Lights Publishing, Woodstock, VT, 1995. j. BM712 .L57. Summary: A workbook with exercises and insights for children on how to deal with the death of a grandparent.
Mellonie, Bryan. Lifetimes: A Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children. Bantam Books, Toronto, ON, CA, 1983. j .BF723 .D3M4. Summary: A book focused on explaining death to children in a positive and uplifting way.
Stein, Sara Bonnett. About Dying: An Open Family Book for Parents and Children Together. Walker Publishing, New York, NY, 1974. j. BF723 .D3S7. Summary: A useful workbook for parents and children to explore the idea of death and dying together.
Techner, David. A Candle for Grandpa. NY: New York URJ Press 1993. A guide to the Jewish funeral for children and parents. Pic Tec.
Viorst, Judith. The tenth good thing about Barney. NY: Aladdin Books, 1971, 1988. In an attempt to overcome his grief, a boy tries to think of the ten best things about his dead cat.
Adult Online Resources
Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) Resources on death, grief and mourning http://urj.org/life/family/bereavement
The articles here are about death, grief, and mourning, including how to talk to children about death, from a Reform Jewish perspective.
My Jewish Learning : Death and Mourning
This website includes articles such as "Shiva, the First Seven Days of Mourning," "Reading & Writing Ethical Wills," "How to Make a Shiva Call," and "Yahrzeit." This website also provides a bibliography of books on the topic and additional sections on topics such as "Death & Mourning 101," "Burial & Mourning," "Practical Aspects," and "Contemporary Issues."
InterfaithFamily.com : Death and Mourning
This websites focuses on resources for interfaith families, intermarried couples or individuals who have converted to Judaism. It offers a number of articles, such as "Finding a Way Through Grief," "Grieving in a Different Tradition," and "Jewish Burial and Mourning Practice for Non-Jewish Relatives," as well as the "Guide to Death and Mourning for Interfaith Families," which is available as both a PDF and Word document.
JewishJournal.com : How to Talk to Your Kids About Death
http://www.jewishjournal.com/education/article/how_to_talk_to_your_kids_about_death_20030523/ This article by Rabbi Earl A. Grollman discusses how parents can discuss death and mourning with children and includes tips for the conversation.
Ritual Well : ceremonies for Jewish Living.
The source for innovative, contemporary, Jewish ritual.
Pathfinder by Library Interns, Jon Cohen and Carli Spina, and Ann Abrams, Librarian.