Question of the Week

September 8,2002


In the year 2001... 42,116 people died as a result of 37,795 fatal car accidents.

"This year [2001] about 553,400 Americans are expected to die of cancer, more than 1,500 people a day. Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the US, exceeded only by heart disease. In the US, 1 of every 4 deaths is from cancer."

"FACT: Cardiovascular diseases rank as America's No. 1 killer, claiming the lives of over 40 percent of the nearly 2.4 million Americans who die each year."

Nearly 2.4 million Americans die each year. Students have friends and relatives in other countries, as well. Family members and friends are lost. Pets who have lived with the children and teens for as long as they can remember die.

"It's normal to feel like your emotions are on a roller coaster no matter what type of loss you've experienced. You may feel anger, sadness, depression, frustration, fear, or an enormous sense of relief, particularly if a loved one suffered a lot before dying. The main thing to keep in mind is that all of these feelings are OK - and talking about how you feel can definitely help. . . . Sometimes grief is caused by situations other than death. The loss of an intimate relationship can also cause grief, as can major life changes, such as moving. Situations like these can cause you to feel a huge sense of loss and emptiness. Dealing with grief and sorting through all the emotions associated with it can be extremely confusing. Psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, MD, describes five stages of grief that people often experience following a serious loss . . ."

Whether you or someone you know has lost someone close, it is often hard to know what to do or say. While an eight-year-old, an eighteen-year-old, and a thirty-eight-year-old will deal with loss differently, they will all have to figure out how to deal with it.

Questions of the Week:
How do people of different ages react to loss? How do they grieve and remember what is lost without forgetting what is still in their lives? How can friends help when they don't understand the emotions and actions they are seeing for the first time in people they care about?

Please email me with any ideas or suggestions.
Note: Due to increasing amounts of SPAM sent to this account, please include "QOW" in the subject line when sending me email.

I look forward to reading what you have to say.

Health Community Coordinator
Access Excellence @ the National Health Museum

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