Assessing bereaved families Book Section


Author: Zaider, T. I.
Editors: Kissane, D. W.; Parnes, F.
Article/Chapter Title: Assessing bereaved families
Title Series: Series in Death, Dying, and Bereavement
Abstract: (from the chapter) The family is often the primary context in which grief is acknowledged and shared. As our aging population grows and medical advances extend survival even for the terminally ill, families are increasingly living with multiple, mounting losses, well before a death occurs. Family grief is therefore not necessarily a discrete event with a clear beginning and end. With illness or death come shifts in family roles, responsibilities, routines, and rituals. In addition to these changes, loss in the family inevitably reactivates prior losses, and the family's response can further solidify or transform attitudes toward death and grief for future generations. In the aftermath of a death, the family faces the task of reconstituting over time its basic functions, such as parenting and keeping traditions. It is only through a developmental and contextually sensitive assessment that we can make sense of the impact of loss on family life, recognize areas of fragility, and identify the sources of resilience that can be harnessed to empower healing. This chapter presents a road map for therapists to assess the bereaved family, determine the need for more intensive psychosocial care, and formulate a focus for continued support. As in any therapeutic encounter, we recognize that the assessment process itself is meant to be interventive. By inquiring into the functioning of a bereaved family, we are both gathering data and inviting expressiveness and reflection among family members themselves, thus forging a path toward increased mutual support. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Keywords: death; psychosocial care; assessment; family members; support; bereaved families; family grief
Book Title: Bereavement Care for Families
ISBN: 978-0-415-63737-4
Publisher: Routledge  
Publication Place: New York, NY
Date Published: 2014-01-01
Start Page: 79
End Page: 91
Language: English
ACCESSION: Book: 2014-02363-006
PROVIDER: Ovid Technologies
PROVIDER: psycinfo
DOI/URL:
Notes: Book Chapter: 6 -- xxiii, 295 -- Source: PsycINFO
MSK Authors
  1. Talia I Zaider
    55 Zaider
Related MSK Work