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Articles on Grief/Grief Resources

Article on Grief
by the Dougy Center

What is Grief?
When someone close to us dies, we experience something called grief. You may have heard about grief but are not quite sure what it is all about. Grief can be feelings: anger, sadness, worry, relief, fear, numbness. Or it may be thoughts, such as "Who will take care of me now that my mom died?," "Why do people get cancer?," or "What will happen next?" Sometimes, grief affects our bodies. We feel sleepy, or have trouble falling asleep. We may not feel like eating. We may have headaches or stomachaches or all of a sudden don't feel like doing things we usually like to do, such as playing or going to school. All of these experiences are normal for grieving kids.
You might have wondered: will I ever get over this? There is no magic pill for grief. It's not something you "get over." A lot of people say grief is like a journey. Although it never ends, things do get better, and there are things you can do to smooth over the rough and rocky places along the way.

Every kid grieves differently. There are no right or wrong ways to grieve. There are, however, some helpful things and not-so-helpful things you can do while you're grieving.

Chances are, you know someone who died. It might have been your mother or father. Your sister or brother. Your friend. It may have happened a long time ago or just recently. What has it been like for you? Randy, a sophomore in high school, was 14 when his dad died of colon cancer. This is how he describes the experience of grieving the death of his dad:

"It's been six months since my dad died. I haven't told my friends how I feel. I just smile and make everybody laugh so they don't know how much it hurts. I don't talk to my mom because I don't want her to feel worse. Once I did, but she got all teary. I felt like crying too. No way am I going to cry."

Maybe you can relate to Randy. Or maybe you've felt some of these things:
I'm the only one.
No one understands what I'm going through, but they think they do.
I can't talk to my friends about this.
I can't talk to my parent(s) because they get too upset.
Everyone wants me to talk about my feelings and I don't want to talk.
I just want to be alone.
I wish I didn't feel so different.
When is this "grief" going to go away?
I am mad. I am sad. I hurt.
I don't know what I feel.
I hate it when people tell me, "Move on."

Sometimes it helps to talk to other people your own age who've had a death. Or to read about their experiences. There are no right or wrong ways to grieve a death. But there are some helpful and not-so-helpful ways that people grieve. You can learn about these things here.

How Should I Grieve?
Everyone grieves differently:
•    One teen may want to talk about death.
•    Another may choose to cry.
•    One might write about their experiences in a journal or chat room.
•    Some choose to express their grief in creative/artistic ways.
•    Others are physical in their grief - participating in sports or other big energy activities
No one way is the right way to grieve - your way of grieving is right for you

Resources  - Grief Support for Children and Teens

SF Bay Area Program

Josie’s Place for Bereaved Youth and Families


mailing address: 3288-21st St. #139

San Francisco, CA 94110

Offers concurrent ongoing grief support groups at no cost for children, teens and the

adults in their lives.  Groups meet twice a month in the evening in the Sunset District.

Contact: Pat Murphy, Director

Hospice by the Bay

San Francisco and Marin locations

Bereavement information and registration line: 415.526.5699

Individual grief counseling for children and teens

Circle of Care

Program of the East Bay Agency for Children

2540 Charleston St

Oakland, CA 94602

510.531.7551 x3195

Counseling and peer support groups for children, teens and their families

San Mateo County

Oaktree Bereavement Center

1500 Perez Drive

P.O.Box #1827

Pacifica, CA 94044

Offers support groups for teens and adults and individual counseling.

Pathways Hospice

395 Oyster Point Blvd. #128

So. San Francisco, CA 94080


Individual counseling available to the community at no charge for up to a year following a death.

Sutter VNA and Hospice- San Mateo

Mailing Address

Sutter VNA & Hospice

700 S. Claremont Street, Suite 220
San Mateo, CA 94402


Groups and individuals

Mission Hospice and Home Care

1670 S. Amphlett Blvd., Suite 300

San Mateo, CA 94402


Individual counseling for children and teens

Santa Clara County

Kara/Palo Alto, CA

 457 Kingsley Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94301
(650) 321-5272 

Counseling and peer support groups for children, teens and adults

Grief Camps for Children and Teens

Camp Erin

Weekend camp for grieving children and teens – provided by both Hospice by the Bay (held in August) and Kara.(held in July)  See their contact information above – as well as:

Hospice of Santa Cruz County, Mt. Herman Redwood Camp 841.430.3000


Community Hospice Modesto, CA


Camp Towanga

131 Steuart Street, Suite 460
San Francisco, CA 94105

(415) 543-2267
(415) 543-5417 fax

Grief and Growing Bereavement Weekend


Comfort Zone Camp

Offered their first No. California camp in January 2015


Camp Hope – California


Sierra Hospice Camp HUG

National Resources

National Alliance for Grieving Children

The Dougy Center

Online bookstore where you can buy pamphlets/books on supporting children following a loss.  They have a workbook for kids who have had someone special die by homicide and suicide, books/pamphlets (inexpensive) on grief in the schools - -good info for teachers and school administrators.

The Dougy Center also has a national directory of grief support centers for children and teens.

Online bookstores - books and other resources for purchase,

Compassion Books, Inc.

7036 State Hwy 80 South
Burnsville, NC 28714

To place an order for books:

Call: 1-800-970-4220

Compassion Books is a great resource for books for children, teens and adults to help them through serious illness, death and dying and bereavement.

The Centering Corporation

7230 Maple Street

Omaha, Nebraska 68134

Toll-Free Number: 866-218-0101

The Centering Corporation is another great resource for books, dvds for children, teens and adults to help them through serious illness, death and dying and bereavement.

Center for Loss and Life Transition

3735 Broken Bow Rd., Fort Collins, CO 80526


Online bookstore. Dr. Wolfelt, Founder and Director, is the author of several books on grief available for purchase.












































































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