New Techniques of Grief Therapy: Bereavement and Beyond
Author: Robert A. Neimeyer
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Course Created: 1
Practice Level: Intermediate
Robert A. Neimeyer
Robert A. Neimeyer, PhD, is a professor of psychology at the University of Memphis, where he also maintains an active clinical practice. Neimeyer has published 27 books, including Techniques of Grief Therapy: Creative Practices for Counseling the Bereaved and Grief and the Expressive Arts: Practices for Creating Meaning, the latter with Barbara Thompson, and serves as editor of the journal Death Studies. The author of over 400 articles and book chapters and a frequent workshop presenter, he is currently working to advance a more adequate theory of grieving as a meaning-making process. Neimeyer served as president of the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC) and chair of the International Work Group for Death, Dying, & Bereavement. In recognition of his scholarly contributions, he has been granted the Eminent Faculty Award by the University of Memphis, made a fellow of the clinical psychology division of the American Psychological Association, and given lifetime achievement awards by both the Association for Death Education and Counseling and the International Network on Personal Meaning.
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Loss comes in many forms. Some patients grieve the loss of a loved one, while others mourn ambiguous or disenfranchised losses. Mental health and human services providers are in a unique position to help their patients identify, process, and navigate the emotions caused by grief and loss. The text, New Techniques of Grief Therapy, presents frameworks of grief, therapeutic interventions, techniques, and tools that prepare providers to assist clients suffering from complex and/or extended grief due to these different types of losses. Specific exercises and activities for social workers, psychologists, counselors, and marriage and family therapists to use in sessions with clients are provided. The purpose of this course is to prepare clinicians to evaluate grief and bereavement and, if indicated, to facilitate appropriate therapeutic approaches.
Clinicians can apply the therapeutic tools and methods found in this course as they work with bereaved clients who are trying to navigate the initial phases of grief, process sudden or traumatic deaths, and engage in meaningful lives after loss. This learning material helps providers assist patients in articulating their emotions around specific and ambiguous losses, practicing self-care, revising personal meaning, and reaffirming attachment. Other topics presented in the course include and are not limited to culturally sensitive approaches, fostering compassion, self-reporting assessments, evidence-based evaluations tools, and the therapeutic uses of imagery, re-storying loss, and validation. Upon completion of this course, providers will be able to apply evidence-informed grief therapy techniques when facilitating bereavement work.
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- 1) Describe modern frameworks of grief and bereavement.
- 2) Discuss tools and techniques for evaluating grief experiences and expressions.
- 3) Recognize benefits of techniques used for assisting clients in the grieving process.
- 4) Identify approaches and interventions to help bereaved clients articulate feelings around ambiguous or disenfranchised losses.
- 5) Differentiate presentations of grief and depression.
- 6) Discuss therapeutic approaches to help clients foster compassion for themselves and others.
- 7) Describe exercises and models that assist clients to work with their emotions through the bereavement process.
- 8) Differentiate appropriate uses of imagery in treatment after the loss of a loved one.
- 9) Explain effective techniques to help clients move beyond loss through the revision of personal meaning.
- 10) Recognize techniques often applied to help clients reaffirm attachments and transition out of bereavement.
- 11) Apply techniques utilizing dialogues with the deceased for grieving clients.
- 12) Discuss treatment approaches that validate clients’ emotions as they process a significant loss.
- 13) Apply effective re-storying interventions to reframe meaning after loss.
- 14) Explain various therapeutic interventions to facilitate loved ones support of bereaved clients.
- Framing the Work
- Evaluating Grief
- Moving Through Bereavement
- Articulating Ambiguous Loss
- Practicing Self-Care
- Fostering Compassion
- Working With Emotion
- Utilizing Imagery
- Revisiting Personal Meaning
- Reaffirming Attachment
- Dialoguing with the Deceased
- Validating Lives
- Re-storying Loss
- Facilitating Support
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